The day has come. The exhibition is finally open. And I would be lying to you if I told you I didn’t spend most of the weekend in my bed gradually diffusing from a four-month adrenaline rush. On Sunday I stretched and made some watercolours in the afternoon light with a beeswax candle lit and it was all very relaxed. And then, we ordered pizza.
I may have said this before, but I am often envious of authors who have entire segments at the tail end of their books to deliver their thanks and acknowledgements. Because artists rarely have such an opportunity, I’d like to take some time and space here on the blog to do so. So many people supported me in this journey that the list feels like it stretches off past the horizon line, but I’d like to express my gratitude to some in particular:
To Beverly Barbour and all the folks at the Anna Templeton Centre, for leading me into the world of textiles and for being so generous and flexible with my schedule during this busy time.
To all the people who so graciously gave of their time and talents to keep me fed, give me rides, help me brainstorm and problem-solve, and keep me emotionally grounded during this roller coaster ride: Audrey Hurd, Mary MacDonald, Jay Butler, Jen Cake, Harry & Sue Bryan, Pam Hall, Sherwin Tjia, Sara Tilley, Chris Shortall, Joshua Vettivelu, Meghan Scott, Steve Evans, and Gina Rae King.
To Alexe Hanlon, who volunteered her time to help me sew this beast together (and she has good practice, after all she did knit a whale).
To my parents, who have consistently believed in me since I was a “wee geeber” as my mom would say, for their love and endless kindnesses.
To the marvellous team at The Rooms: the curators, who asked good questions and gave good insight, Mireille Eagan, Kate Wolforth, and Vicky Chainey-Gagnon; talented designer Beverly Collett; and the tech team whose skills are unparalleled, Will, Barry, Tim, and Jamie.
And finally, to the talented and wonderful Clare Fowler of Clare Dawn Couture, whose dexterous hands made this all physically possible by doing so much of the labour that precedes the weaving: winding balls of wool, prepping warps, and rolling on to the loom.
And thanks to my dad Harry Bryan for these lovely photos!