Tuesday, February 09, 2010

Wabi Sabi

I am reading a book called Wabi-Sabi for Artists, Designers, Poets and Philosophers by Lawrence Koren and trying to grasp the concept of wabi-sabi. I am not sure why other than I love the term. The author says it is a concept derived from the Buddhist assertion of the Three Marks of Existance "imperfect, impermanent, and incomplete". Andrew Juniper claims, "if an object or expression can bring about, within us, a sense of serene melancholy and a spiritual longing, then that object could be said to be wabi-sabi.".  Richard Powell summarizes by saying "It (wabi-sabi) nurtures all that is authentic by acknowledging three simple realities: nothing lasts, nothing is finished, and nothing is perfect.". If that doesn't sound like life itself.

I am altering some cloth that I need to use in a piece of fiber art. I fondly refer to it's beginnings as a "bad dye job". The colors were flat mostly sort of solid browns and greens. I would like to add some interest and complexity to them. The first layer was the solid colored dyes. The second layer was the removal of some of the first layer with discharge paste. I used a variety of household items that had texture to them as the understory and a window screen as my silk screen wannabe. It was pretty slick because the window screen held everything in place and kept it all fairly stable. Do you think this is wabi-sabi. It just might be. I showed them to a group of fellow fiber artists today and they all loved them. Wait until they see where they are going.

 I promise to add some photos to this post tomorrow showing some of the results. So do come back then.

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