I wanted to blog about a very special day for me - a career highlight to be honest. I met some cracking people and had a fab time.
I don't have many photos and those I do are blurry, so I've taken a couple which are freely available on google images and hope the people involved won't mind.
(Left) standing with fizz, in front of the quilt....but I'm racing ahead.
Diary of 25th March
Private View: Spirit of Womanhood Exhibition, The Oxo Tower Wharf, South Bank, London.
I was incredibly lucky to be selected for the above exhibition in London to hang alongside other female artists including Tracy Emin at the Oxo Tower in South Bank, London. It was the only quilt alongside ceramics, paintings, drawings so I felt doubly honoured to also be promoting the quilt-as-an-artform, as it's quite unusual for quilts to be exhibited in this way instead of the usual dedicated quilt show. I believe from what I'd heard that the text/dialogue stitched onto the quilt had made an impression. Copies of the text were handed out at the exhibition. I had also been invited to a rather spectacular opening event, with Cherie Blair, Lord and Lady Levy and Melvin Bragg. Here's what happened!
I prevaricated as I usually do. To go or not to go - it's such a pain to catch trains to London and then have to battle with the underground. Generally speaking I have no sense of direction and I have no idea where I'm going most of the time. I blindly follow G like a faithful old dog trying to please.
But of course we went! And apart from needing help to get into and out of all the stations because the ticket machine wouldnt read the ticket it was fine. NB I was told politely by one station manager, that I should try using my train ticket in the machine and not the seat reservation ticket which really couldn't be expected to work. I told him that's what happens when cousins marry. He fell over.
We had oodles of time to spare so went for a bite to eat and spend an hour at the Tate. This involves a walk along the south bank, next to the river. I hadn't twigged that it was called the South Bank because it was on the South Bank of the Thames. But then I only recently found out that Banoffee pie was a mix of the words banana and toffee. What can I say?
We had to pass the Oxo Tower, and can you imagine my shock - and joy (if I'd have been a child the teacher would be hurrying towards the spare pants cupboard) at seeing my quilt in a glass sided gallery on the main walkway, for all to see. I just like to say to all those show organizers who refuse to show the Life Quilts or have hidden then behind curtains...... BLAH (raspberry sound plus tongue stuck out) and Get Real. Everyone regardless of creed, religion, sex or age was free to see the quilt in full.
The Tate was fab and of course what a view from the restaurant window. (St Pauls Cathedral in the centre of the photo and a close up for those who haven't seen it)
We made our way back to the Oxo tower and a were allowed through and handed some fizz. I donned a name badge and was whisked away to do a filmed interview about the work and have some photos taken. I was introduced to lots of people and they were all lovely about the quilt.
Melvin Bragg arrived and he like the humour apparently. Then the speeches began.
The whole evening was to support the Charity, Women's Interfaith Network, a very worthy cause and I hope they do well promoting their message.
It was odd being in a glass cube in the middle of London with these people, and lots of other people looking in from outside.
We left quite quickly as we had a train to catch, but I had a lovely time and am so very grateful for the opportunity to exhibit with other well established, and emerging artists like myself. Tracy Emin was exhibiting, and there was some fabulous, thought provoking work on show. I'd love to show you but don't have permission to put up their photos.
Here's a quote for you about the quilt from a newspaper - it might make you laugh! Wrong on so many levels, but "am I bovvered?" No not really. I'm just happy.
"All different kinds of art are on display: sculpture, oil paintings, ceramics. There is even a quilt. Annabel Rainbow’s bedspread is quite extra-ordinary, depicting an elderly women sitting naked surrounded by books, revelling in all the unconventional beauty of her old age."
The exhibition's been extended to 6th April though, so if you're down in London do go and see a quilt in an unexpected place.- it's free.