Saturday, February 19, 2011

found orange paper: make beads

orange tulips with flying goddess back ground 
golden earrings pierce both my ears

this weeks fresh tulips ORANGE! the Valentines day shortage of exotic colors ended
rolled black and orange/red paper triangles with a touch of glue creates a paper bead
Last night I went to Pyramid Atlantic Studios for a free members only workshop in paper bead making taught by one of this winter's interns, Melissa. The class was about 6 female members, another intern, Ann and me the only "guy" attending. In a little over two hours we all had an assortment of rolled paper beads ready to string up into dangle earrings or take home to make other jewelry. I received lots of apologies from Melissa because she said she was not thinking about something for a guy to make and use.  I was happy to have a set of earrings that I gifted to a friendly poetess down the road. But as I illustrated today I also have holes in my ears for earrings. Although they have not been used in many years they are still there.

Naturally when I saw a sheet of orange paper laying in the pile of studio samples I claimed a couple sheets to use for my beads... and I took along some old black Arches print paper from the scrap bin which was thick and fuzzy to roll. Others used various hand made papers from the stock Melissa prepared for the workshop. I was impressed with her very well organized preparations and all the attention to each individual in her class. Thanks Melissa! I had a great time and I came home educated and energized by the workshop and good company. These winter months being sick with a string of doctors and specialists to visit has been a kind of drag on my creative soul. Photographing beads first thing this morning wasn't very easy but I wanted to show you the results.

In 2006 I saw a installation exhibition by Asian artist Simryn Gill at the Arthur M. Sackler gallery. (Washington Post review) The only part I remembered all these years were enormous strings of tiny paper beads, she calls them pearls... hand rolled using the pages of books. She did not intent to show these private necklace books because they were works made for her personal friends. I guess the curator insisted they be included in the exhibition and borrowed the strings of pearls back to exhibit here in Washington DC. They told us Simryn Gill asked her best friends to chose their favorite books and she cut and rolled them into pearls making long strands until the entire book was a huge necklace then gave them back to these friends. What a treasure she created from their favorite real paper books. Those book bead strings caught my imagination on fire and that is why I decided to go try this Pyramid Atlantic workshop.  Today I found this blog post about Simryn Gill's Strings of Book Pearls with photo illustrations of a pair of sets she made for two guys which also has pictures of their books before they were re-purposed to become pearls.

beads on wire makes earrings

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