While in Turkey, we visited the ancient city of Bergama. Our B&B host drove us up to the magnificent ruins overlooking the city, and said we could easily walk back down later, going through a hole in the fence. We did, and passed this decrepit abandoned house. I went in, and carefully explored, and found 2 old textiles, even more decrepit than the house:
Back home, washed and photographed, I had great fun playing with them (I consider the business side of art - shipping work, entering shows, etc, - to be work. Actually DOING the art - thinking, researching, sewing and sewing - is my play, my fun, my addiction).
I had taken these textiles out of Turkey. Now I needed to give them their context of time and history. I sewed the blanket remnant over white cloth (to create a visual edge) and tan wool (another edge, and stability). I tried to suggest the blanket as a house, adding embedded clothespin 'people' and a keyplate on the door. The slightly darker background has dyed, embroidered linens covering a layer of crochet. So, like Turkey, it has many layers.
I used the same sort of multi-layered background for the scarf. The white layer directly under it is part of an old faded quilt. Here, I focused on just preserving the remnant, patching it with various nettings.
Turkey was the second trip my sister and I took together. On our first trip, to Ireland, I had also found textile remnants. During the Great Famine in Ireland, in 1845, many farms were abandoned. Throughout the countryside, you can still see the stone remains of the farmhouses.
As we drove along, we saw one old house being restored - and there was a big pile of dirt and weeds and everything that had been dug out of the ruins! We stopped the car, I dug right in, and found a couple of beautiful glass bottles and parts of very old shoes - the kind which were made by hand, with tiny nails. Wrapped in plastic, I managed to get it all back home and did a great deal of washing and careful drying, and sewed the shoe fragments.....
..together with photos (printed on cloth) of headstones and an overgrown wall, and an embroidered cloth, dyed green: