Nellie"s Needles

Sunday, February 25, 2007

Kitchen Art

This delightful small piece hangs in my kitchen. It won the blue ribbon for miniature quilts at the 2004 Dogwood Arts Quilt Show.
Sweet Gold - 9"x4"- 2004
It hung in a spot that called for a companion piece. So within the next year I made this one using the same collage technique.
The pears and grapes are shaded with oil stick pastels. The white highlights are paint. The butterflies and flowers are also enhanced with pastels.

Both of those pieces had their beginnings as appliqued and embroidered dish towels belonging to my friend, Alicia. When they got worn and grundgy she used them as clean-up rags for her painting projects. When I made a fuss over them they became mine. Here's the last one she's passed onto me.
This is where the pair of those miniature quilts hang.
This area features a collection of chickens. I find it amusing that I really dislike real chickens, but I very much like chicken art. My negative feelings stem from living with and caring for and plucking those stupid birds on the farm in Iowa.My Carol Bryer Fallet tea cozy lives in this cupboard. It covers the clear glass teapot.I'm especially fond of this cozy, comfortable corner in the kitchen. It's a nice place to enjoy a spot of tea with a friend. The first scrap quilt I made is hanging over the back of a chair.
We have a permanent guest, Bertha Big Body, who occupies this corner of my cozy corner. The painting of the chef with the chicken was made by my husband when he was 11 1/2 years old. He did the wood burning of Toulouse Lautrec about 40 years ago.As you can see, our kitchen is full of art. There's a 4' tall wooden banana tree standing in the middle of the island. Of course there's Elvis as well as one of my favorite chickens. Really, there is space to work and room to eat here.

22 comments:

joyce said...

Wow! Your kitchen looks like an art gallery! You are a talented pair. It's funny because I just decided today, a few minutes before looking at your blog, that my next wall hanging is going to be about chickens. Stay tuned.

Vicki W said...

I'd consider taking up cooking if my kitchen was so fun! Naah - I'll let DH keep up with the cooking!

Waltraud said...

Hi Nelli,
I tried to send you a comment, but it seems it didn´nt work. I want to say thank you for your nice comment. I´m looking forward to see your blog everyday.
Many greetings
Waltraud

arlee said...

That is the *BEST* kitchen i have EVER seen!!! AWESOME!!!!I'd lovta have a cuppa cawfee there!

Quilting Journey said...

What an incredibly fun kitchen! It's obvious that your creativity shines no matter what room you are in! It has been said that the things that we collect are the living history of our lives. Showing us how you take another person's paint smeared castoffs and turn them into pieces of art shows us how to look at all things differently. Seeing your kitchen is a peek into your serendipitous spirit! Thank you for sharing this...I think we would all like to come over for a cup of tea!

Helen said...

What a fun place to be. Your fridge stickers are SO organised!

teodo said...

My daughter saw your blog and she said "I want them too!". It seems like being at an art exposition. Very complments to you and your husband! ciao, ciao.

Helen Conway said...

Hi Thanks for your comment on my blog - now I've found you! I am in love with all Afrcan quilts and i wanted to try a Ricky Tims and then I saw yours and .... wow! I never thought to combine the two. Do you have other African art to show? I'll be back to check out the answer! By the way - your house is amazing.

Nellie Bass Durand said...

Helen,
I'm working on an African/Harmonic Covergence quilt for our big show in May. After it's been judged and exhibited I'll post about it.

Nellie Bass Durand said...

Dear All,
If it were possible I'd love to have each of you come to have tea in my cozy corner of the kitchen AND to play with me in my studio. Soooo... if any of you ever come to this area, please let me know. It would be great to meet you in person.

Janice said...

Hey Nellie - I've just spent a lovely hour reading your tutorials, all about your art quilts, crinkle quilts, ortquilts and teaching children to sew. And that's only a small part of your blog! Thanks for such a wonderful resource and being so generous with your tips and instructions. I'm going to use that foam core board frame idea, its a GREAT idea!

And please come back to New Zealand sometime. Call in! We'll put on good weather for you, I promise!

Shirley said...

I'd feel right at home in your place, Nellie!

Karoda said...

Wow! what a kitchen!!!! And Bertha could come live with me any time!!! How is she made? Years ago I made two with a group of artists and the skeleton was made of pvc pipe and wire, wrapped with batting and covered with sheers.

Nellie Bass Durand said...

Karoda,
Bertha was a "bag lady" purchased in New York City by my mother-in-law. She was a mascot in her shop, The Torii, for about a year. My husband had fallen for her, so she became his birthday present about 25 years ago.

Bertha is a big sports fan. She's attended a number of sporting events, or at least the tailgate parties before and after. She's also a bit of an Elvis fan. I do wish she would remove the tag from her glasses, but she likes that Elvis's picture and name are on it. Her main job is guarding the handbags of ladies who come to visit.

Belém said...

First time I go to USA I will visit you and have a cup of coffee in your cozy and warm kitchen. Thank for share with us this corner of your home. Both mini-quilts are splendid but I love the one with grapes very much.
Hugs to you and Bertha.

Jan said...

Nellie, I love your kitchen -- it would be so much fun to wake up and make coffee in that room (I'm not a tea drinker). Your creative spirit is so present. I love looking at artist's spaces ... do you create your art in the kitchen?

Nellie Bass Durand said...

Jan,
My studio is well equiped with enough space to do my creating there.

Laundry and cooking gets done in the kitchen. I like to cook and my approach is creative ... recipes are more of guide. One of my favorite things to do is add chili powder to anything chocolate ... even chocolate dipped strawberries.

Waltraud said...

Thank you for your nice comment.
In some ways you are right. I had to go through rough times in my life, but now I´m able to enjoy life again.
I think it´s astonishing that someone I´ve never met is able to interpret things like you do.
Love
Waltraud

lappemor said...

LOVE your kitchen, and the two miniature quilts. All the sudden my own kitchen seems really boring, hmm....

Finn said...

I have to say it's the most fun approach to kitchen I've ever seen, and I love every inch of it. Classic paintings rubbing elbows(or knees) with folk art. The serendipity of it is wonderful. Thanks for sharing! *VBS* Hugs, Finn

Shelina said...

Nellie, both of your fruit pieces are exquisite and well deserving of ribbons. Your house is so super - I too would love to walk around and ogle over each and every piece.

Self Taught Artist said...

I've never thought much about quilts, when I did images of big squares flooded my mind. I have never seen anything like what you are doing...the 1st and 2nd pics on this post are amazing! Its like watercolor. Did you 'invent' this style? Its gorgeous Nellie.