Detail of the amulet bead made for the Artists Amulet necklace.

Altered States – A WAFTA Exhibition

Artwork by Liz, Artwork Finished, Exhibition
The contents of my bag (number 30) for the WAFTA Altered States Challenge

The contents of my bag (number 30) for the WAFTA Altered States Challenge

Altered States was the title of the exhibition challenge set by WAFTA. Buying a bag full of “bits” was the entry point for the exhibition launched in April 2017. The bag contained: A magazine, a dress pattern, a synthetic and very stretchy cocktail dress, 2 lots of wool carpet yarn, sea-grass rope, a piece of cotton fabric, a piece of yellow embroidered and beaded sari, some Watsonia leaves (a noxious weed here in Western Australia), and some unwashed and smelly alpaca fleece (my dog was very interested in that!), We could also, if we wished, use the bag itself.

Making an artwork from said “bits” to be shown in an exhibition at the Perth Town Hall from 16-25 September 2017 was the challenge. There were only 2 rules: One – to use a little or a lot of everything in the bag, Two – the finished item must fit inside a cube 30x30x30cm (if flat, 30x30cm).

I made a necklace titled Artists Amulet. The statement for the piece read: “This necklace has affirmation beads which the wearer may use to alter a negative state of mind by drawing on their courage and inner resources to meet the challenges of creating and exhibiting work. The amulet bead protects against those individuals that contribute negative energy.”

Artists Amulet as displayed at Altered States Exhibition, Perth Town Hall, Sept 2017

Artists Amulet as displayed at Altered States Exhibition, Perth Town Hall, Sept 2017

Detail of the affirmation beads in Artists Amulet.

Detail of the affirmation beads in Artists Amulet.

Detail of the amulet bead made for the Artists Amulet necklace.

Detail of the amulet bead made for the Artists Amulet necklace.

Detail of some of the paper beads made for the Artists Amulet necklace.

Detail of some of the paper beads made for the Artists Amulet necklace.

I was invited to give a talk about the making of my piece, including how I felt when I first saw the contents of the bag. I’ll put the notes that I made for the talk in my next blog post.

Op Shop Bounty

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Shell necklaces found in an op shop. I envisage these being taken apart and used to decorate textiles or baskets.

Shell necklaces found in an op shop. I envisage these being taken apart and used to decorate textiles or baskets.

There are a couple of op shops on my route home from meetings at Alexander Park Craft House and I often call in to one or the other to have a bit of a rummage around. This was my bounty from last week. The beads are made from shell – two of the necklaces are made from smoothed sort-of-rectangular beads and the other has perfectly round disks.

The sequin top has many more sequins on it than I could buy new for the same money. It needs about 3 stitches to secure a line of sequins which are starting to unravel but other than that this top could be worn – if I was half the size I am now! 🙂

This sequin top is WAAAY too small for me but I can use the sequins.

This sequin top is WAAAY too small for me but I can use the sequins.

I envisage all of these beads and sequins being useful embellishments on bags, baskets, vessels, or clothing that I make in the future.