Wednesday, 12 November 2014

Dorothy Caldwell Silent Ice/Deep Patience @ AGP 9

Dorothy Caldwell Collecting cards (journal); Photo © Karen Thiessen, 2014
In her 2003 In Good Repair solo exhibition at the Textile Museum of Canada Dorothy displayed several bound notebooks (along with white cotton gloves with which to handle them) in which she had made marks with ink and with burning/scorching. Collecting cards is a notebook in another form. One hundred and twelve cards are pinned to the wall with three-inch black specimen pins. The cards are about 2" X 3" and appear to be heavy cotton rag paper, similar to BFK Rives printmaking paper. The edges are nicely deckled and I wonder if Dorothy purchased the cards this way or if she moistened the heavy paper and then tore it against a sharp edge.
Dorothy Caldwell Collecting cards (journal); Photo © Karen Thiessen, 2014
The Collecting cards are small intimate studies that Dorothy stitched, wrapped, marked with earth ochre, ink, and appliquéd with plant material (leaves, small flowers).
Dorothy Caldwell Collecting cards (journal); Photo © Karen Thiessen, 2014
Together they resemble an ancient alphabet.
Dorothy Caldwell Collecting cards (journal); Photo © Karen Thiessen, 2014
Note the layers of shadows cast by the cards.
Dorothy Caldwell Collecting cards (journal); Photo © Karen Thiessen, 2014
A stitched leaf. Could it be eucalyptus?
Dorothy Caldwell Collecting cards (journal); Photo © Karen Thiessen, 2014
Earth ochre, stitching, plant matter, and black charcoal marks.
Dorothy Caldwell Collecting cards (journal); Photo © Karen Thiessen, 2014
Dorothy Caldwell Collecting cards (journal); Photo © Karen Thiessen, 2014
The middle card is adorned with either delicate plant matter or dead mosquitoes.
Dorothy Caldwell Collecting cards (journal); Photo © Karen Thiessen, 2014
Collecting cards was one of my favourite parts of the exhibition. The cards are very personal and reveal the research and thinking behind Dorothy's new work.

All photos were taken with permission from Dorothy Caldwell and the fine staff of the Art Gallery of Peterborough.

9 comments:

Judy Martin said...

One of my favourite parts of the exhibition as well.

Jennifer said...

Karen, I cannot thank you enough for sharing your experience of Dorothy's exhibition in the way that you have. Her work touches and speaks to me at a base level that resonates throughout my being.

Karen said...

The hardest part about writing this post was avoiding the use of exclamation points!

Valerie Knapp said...

So very beautiful!

Velma Bolyard said...

meeting dorothy and watching her use her cards so informs this powerful installation...it's awesome, a word so overused but correct here. thank you for showing these.

Robin Olsen said...

Fabulous! Thanks for sharing.

Carol Wiebe said...

I can see why seeing Caldwell's work "up close and personal" would encourage the use of exclamation points. I pinned this so I can see it over and over again.

Ruth Andre said...

Lovely and organic works.

CAMILLA LOVERIDGE said...

Thank you for sharing your love of Dorothy Caldwell's work through these images, Karen. They are beautiful, and truly inspiring. I love the installation of long pins upon the textured wall, with the play of shadows cast by the cards, as well. thank you.