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ABCD February 2021

March 8, 2021

Eleven members of Artists’ Book Club Dove met in the land of Zoom on 27th February. Thanks to Thalia for hosting us. Those of us who live close enough have been socially-distantly planting trees at the Dove. 494 trees have been planted so far in the field called Wild Lea, formerly a ryegrass monoculture. All planted with love and mycorrhizal powder. It will be many years before the fungal network is fully established, but the powder will get it off to a good start.

L-R Ama, Caroline, Janine, Jane
Here I’m planting a pin oak, Quercus palustris
Bron’s map of the planting at Wild Lea

Bron, Judith and I have been taking Alice Fox’s brilliant online course “Place-making: Winter”. Below is my quilt-map of a local wood I’ve been walking in for 41 years. The squares are roughly 2″. Fabrics are a pre-war damask table-napkin complete with laundry-mark, an old pillow-case, a green-and-white striped linen tea-towel and dressmaking off-cuts of white cotton and silk, all dyed with foraged materials. The second picture is of two small pieces worked with dyed yarns on scraps of dyed woollen blanket. The lichens are crocheted. I found the rusty chain in the wood, entangled with ivy stems. The ring-pulls were from a cache of empty cans in the wood.

And here is a letter I wrote with Quink and a cola pen. I folded it and left it on my pet hen’s grave in the garden for a week, lightly covered with some oak leaves I’d used for dyeing.

Carol and Judith are taking an online course with Les Bicknell. Here are some of Judith’s constructions.

And some of Carol’s work. The third photo shows paper prepared for use in Guy Begbie’s book construction course later in March.

Clare has been making books with Rachel Hazell, The Travelling Bookbinder.

Pauline has just completed a year-long book based on our title ‘Strange Times.’ It is a concertina, with a double page spread for each month from March 2020 to February 2021. Drawing, lino cut, letterpress and collage. ‘Strange Times: a year like no other.’

Caroline is taking a course with Newlyn School of Art. Here are her beach collage and a page from her sketchbook.

Thalia, Bron, Jane and Judy are still making mokuhanga prints with Robin Frood. Some of us have taken advantage of the amazing free resources offered by Book Paper Thread. All of us are gathering information and illustrations for our collective book about our foremothers. The pages will be finished and ready to bind by the time of our next meeting, Saturday 27th March. Finally, a little heap of eavesdroppings.

February Dove-droppings

orange flies on the sheep-poo
butterflies on snowdrops
brimstones on crocus

a ladybird in my bed all winter
all over my duvet oh dear
disdained by the family

Arthur the Aardvark
took on another life
he tells me nothing

a troll made of lichen
dreaming of elsewhere
goldcrests in his hair

married the man next door
older than her father
to sew banners for the freemasons

the sun travelling round Somerset
can spell but just can’t write
letters from Burma

a brushmaker near Bruton
coconut in an ash handle
no therapy for that

a mysterious box
strip poker in the kitchen
but that’s another story

disowned by both families
one had an ear-trumpet
and sent 2/6 postal orders

grandfather walked with his cow
from Wales to London
three Scots pines were a sign

I think it’s a fact
the women knitted as they walked
and famously never talked

7 Comments leave one →
  1. March 8, 2021 9:32 pm

    I think you are a group of very talented women. Thank you for sharing your quilt and paper. I loved the poem, but I wanted to hear more about the strip poker in the kitchen.

    • March 10, 2021 2:04 pm

      Thank you, Mollie. I regret I’m not at liberty to share any more about the strip poker in the kitchen! I wonder, was it the hen that brought you to my blog? I have a new henhouse all ready for when Bird Flu restrictions are lifted and I can have another hen or two. We have our pandemic and the birds have theirs.

  2. March 9, 2021 10:38 am

    I love the work – and this month’s Dove-droppings!

  3. pattyrat permalink
    March 10, 2021 2:28 pm

    It’s a fascinating blog, Ama. I love sifting through the Dove-droppings to see if I can pick out my sister’s (Clare) One of these days I’ll follow up the intriguing-looking links too Trisha x



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