Looks Like Weave Made It
This really warrants a photo, but once again I didn’t have my camera handy.
I’ll do my best to paint you a mental picture.
Last night good friend and artist, Sharon Kallis, invited me over to play with ivy cuttings.
Working (kind of) in tandem with the Stanley Park Ecological Society Ivy Busters (volunteers who periodically cull the invasive English Ivy from the park’s grounds) her goal is to re-purpose the unwanted ivy by weaving, knitting, knotting, etc, etc, it into useful, and benign, structures. Sharon will be conducting community workshops in Stanley Park over the next year, one on the last Saturday of every month. Hanging habitats are on the menu for January.
I must admit I was quite humbled by my experience of working with the ivy.
First and foremost, you must be flexible in your design. What you envision creating with the ivy is not necessarily what the ivy is going to give you. And I do mean “give to you”.
Make no mistake – it’s all up to the ivy.
Despite all your efforts, the ivy will always have the last word.
And you might not like to hear what it is the ivy has to say.
Only five minutes in, I was already fighting an urge to succumb to the hissy fit that was building inside me.
I wanted to scream, “F-this! Give me some paper and markers! Give me some fabric and thread! Give me something I can control!”
But Sharon is a fantastic leader and very encouraging. So I soldiered on despite the fact that mine looked nothing like the beautiful, elegant, and surprisingly consistent form that she was managing to coax out of the ivy.
Conversely, mine was looking as though it was being built by a dysfunctional bird.
At one point I started thinking that if I were a bird, I would have to be one of those birds who doesn’t make their own nest but steals existing nests from other birds. Birds such as the Sharon-bird, who make lovely, shapely habitats.
I tenaciously plugged on, weaving in and out, in and out.
About two-thirds through I actually had a vessel happening. It had an inside, and an outside. It was starting to take shape – a very organic, asymmetrical shape, but a shape nonetheless.
Finished, it resembled a large garlic bud with two, three foot long braids stretching out from the top (all the better to hang from a tree with, my dear).
Though nothing like Sharon’s, in the end I was satisfied with my quirky accomplishment.
Full details will be forwarded from Sharon regarding place and time in the next week or so, and I will post them in a future muse so y’all can come out and get your weave on.