Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Canadian Women for Women in Afghanistan

I recently had the honour of taking part in a special community Sunday service at St. Paul's United Church, Riverview, NB.  The service was a project of the social justice committee at the church and focused on issues of global and local violence against women. Guest speaker Susan Hartley, Atlantic Chapter representative for Canadian Women for Women in Afghanistan (http://www.cw4wafghan.ca/ ), spoke of the issues that are facing Afghan women and girls and their struggle to become empowered and to gain basic human rights. She explained that the goals of her organization are to advance educational opportunities for Afghan women and children, and to increase the understanding in Canada about human rights in Afghanistan.

My first awareness to the women of Afghanistan came about while viewing a television documentary that showed our former Member of Parliament, Flora MacDonald as she worked towards improving the lives of women and children in Afghanistan. Struck by the beauty of the women I saw and their colourful scarves and dresses, I created a hooked tapestry to represent one of the women in the film. I call her "Arell" and she later became part of an art show that accompanied Colleen Furlotte's film, "A Question of Beauty". 

Later, sitting around a campfire in Algonquin Park with a group of Canadian military families, our conversation included who was leaving again for Afghanistan and who was leaving for the first time. One of the women, a mother with two small children, was preparing to leave on her third tour. She was positive about going - another voice telling how important it was to work towards a better life for Afghan children.

Since then, my Afghan ladies and children have multiplied to become a series, where I humbly attempt to tell a piece of their story


(private collection)

"Zaha and Abbas"
Image: 21 cm. by 28cm.

"Jeena, Nadia and Badria"
Image: 26.5 cm. by 31.5 cm.

"Soraya and Ayesha"
Image: 26.5 cm. by 31.5 cm.

Image: 15cm. by 29.5 cm.

Ⓒcontent copyright 2012 Patricia Winans

All of the pieces (except Arell) are for sale. They are framed as shown. If interested please email me at     patriwinans@gmail.com

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Seeing Patterns...Creating Designs...Going for the Brass Ring

Edge of a creek at low tide

Seeing patterns and creating designs to work into my art is a simple process when I'm open to taking in the forms and shapes around me. Take for instance the patterns in the mud at low tide - with a few scattered rocks - along the edge of a creek that feeds into the Petitcodiac River. Can you see the pattern as a background for a hooked 'Welcome' mat or an abstract watercolour?

c.1910 New Zealand Sidewalk

How about the brick sidewalk? what could be done with this pattern??? 

Salt patterns on the pavement
Or this salt pattern on a street after an ice storm?

Momma always said to Go for the Brass Ring!

Patricia Winans Ⓒ 2012
"It's not enough to reach for the brass ring. You must also enjoy the merry-go-round." (Julie Andrews)

Architects of many large historic buildings have incorporated circular staircases into their designs. If you stand beneath the staircase and take a photograph up through its spiral as it rises to the other floors, you'll have a wonderful swirling design as the beginning for an art project.

One of my photos of a spiral staircase became the background for my latest wall hanging. I also incorporated two 'found' metal pieces.  The brass, man's ring that hangs on the gold chain was found wedged in a crack on a London, ON street. The large brass coupling was at a yard sale. All three things, the photo, the ring and the coupling then became a piece of art.

The ring had lost it's stone and was marred from lying in the street. A metaphor for survival. It needed a frame - so hence the new brass coupling. The rising spiral of the staircase metaphorically supports  grasping the ring and showing the way.

Patricia Winans Ⓒ 2012
Close-up of Ring

Reverse side of Hanging showing Lining and Label

Ⓒ content copyright 2012 Patricia Winans
Hanging is 15"x22". Made from new and up-cycled wool, silk, velour, mohair and metal and is fully lined with polyester velour. 
It is attached to a piece of clear PLEXIGLASⓇ (same size as the hanging) for support when displayed.

Contact me at  patriwinans@gmail.com if interested or for further questions.

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Finding and Smelling the Roses

Smells wonderful!
Along the trails that skirt the shores of the Petitcodiac River you can always count on being surprised. Surprises come by the sight of fourteen great blue herons sitting on the rocks and fishing for supper at low tide, a fledgling eagle soaring above the water (also looking for supper) or by a beautiful rose bush at the edge of the marsh. Did someone plant it? A discard from a garden?  The mystery doesn't matter - as long you always take the time to stop and smell the flowers!

Time now to share with you some of my art that I have for sale. My plan is to add items on a weekly basis. Contact me by email at patriwinans@gmail.com if interested or for further info!

The House that Jill Built
Back View
Yukon Nights
Back View
Anybody Home?  Sold
Back View
These tea cosies will keep your tea "two degrees hotter than just right" for at least an hour while you finish that last chapter in a book or work on a project. Made from up-cycled sweaters (usually all wool) they are double lined with reflective insulated fabric and fleece. Hand washable with care. This design is approximately 13" by 9" and fits up to a six cup tea pot.

Price:  $30.00 Cdn. each plus postage.



Back view

Miss Molly
Back view
These cosies are also double lined with the reflective/insulating fabric and fleece and are hand washable with care. They are approximately 9" by 10" and are designed to fit up to a four cup coffee press - for coffee lovers.

Price:  $28.00 Cdn. each plus postage.

Falling Leaf

Interior view

Keep your treasures in this little wooden basket decorated with a little 5" hooked mat covering the lid. Basket is 5" in diameter and 4" high.
Price:   $25.00 Cdn. plus postage.


Interior view

More treasures to store? Basket is 6.5" in diameter and 3" high. Little hooked mat on top is 5" in diameter.

Price:  $25.00 Cdn. plus postage.


Little Red House
Detail of hooked mat
Interior view of mini cupboard

Ⓒ content copyright 2012 Patricia Winans

Find a place for your things in this mini cupboard with a drawer and a hooked mat on the lid of the upper section. Cupboard is 8" high, 6" wide and 4.5 " deep. Mat is 5.5" by 4".

Price:  $30.00 Cdn. plus postage.

Shalom - until next week!