Saturday, September 19, 2009

My dream of an artist retreat center and why.

When I bought the Iron Horse Inn Historic Bed and Breakfast, my hope was to fulfill a dream of mine, to develop an artist retreat center. Although I don't call myself an artist, I am pretty creative and love to work with my hands, and I love being surrounded by creative people during our art retreats. We have so many different art forms here, including oil, watercolor, quilting, and fabric art and I hope to introduce a lot more, including polymer and beading.
I believe that working with our creativity puts us in touch with our souls. I believe that it is really important for all human beings to find their creative outlet, but unfortunately too many people either don't get the encouragement early on or don't believe that they "have a creative bone in their bodies" I hear this so often when I meet people at the bed and breakfast who hear about the art retreat center. I believe all humans have the capacity to be creative. Wouldn't it be a wonderful world if everyone was producing creative works of art!
While doing my research last year to set up a series of residential artistic workshops, I was stunned at the huge number of creative folks that are out there, quietly working away at their art form. I plan to introduce some of my favorite artists through this blog, over the coming months.
The first artist that come to mind is a master of fabric art. What she produces are not so much quilts as pieces of art that look like paintings. This lovely piece was created by Lenore Crawford, and this is how she describes her work:

"After working in a medical laboratory and chemical research lab for many years, I decided to

pursue art as a full-time endeavor. Creating art is my dream job. I now walk up to my studio

in my attic and play with fabric and fabric paint for a "job"! I also travel occasionally either

for teaching or gathering more inspiration for my art. Currently I am teaching my fusing/fabric

painting technique such as was used to create Monet's Garden Walk shown above from a photo

taken in Giverny, France, in May."

I got to meet Lenore last October at the Houston Quilt Show and I was blown away by the beauty of her work. I got to visit her during one of her workshops and it was obvious that all of the participants were having a fascinating class. I hope we can bring her to The Iron Horse Inn next year to give a workshop.

This lovely piece is entitled "Birch Trees"

Check out Lenor's website to see the full range of her work.

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