June - August 2021
Documentation courtesy of Alison Postma
My pixel quilt series was inspired by my personal experiences during the pandemic. My primary artistic practice is focused in photography which is heavily intertwined with working on the computer. Throughout the pandemic, I grew increasingly sick working on the computer and looking at my phone, and this pushed me to turn towards the tactility of textiles and natural dyeing. My experiments with natural dyeing emerged first as I was interested in understanding the processes of dye creation and my obsession unraveled from there. I wanted to make every single colour and variation possible. I experimented with kitchen scraps such as avocado pits, purple cabbage and onion skins, then turning to more pigmented dyes such as indigo and cochineal. The dyes I use have deeply interesting origins and come from plants, roots and bugs.
After accumulating dyed fabrics, I started to make them into quilts composed of 3x3 inch squares. As I was creating these quilts, I realized that the quilts were the analog version of my computer, and that the squares reminded me of pixels. I was trying to create something out of these squares but it did not resemble an image, it was a cluster of colours; samples of the original textiles they came from. The dyed works I create are often utilizing old bedsheets and discarded textiles. These dyed pieces are using natural pigments from around the world and are now all together in one place, and function similarly to pixels. Pixels are culminated from servers and information and the parallel between my project and the pixels path is uncanny. The relationship between analog (quilts) and digital (pixel) mediums are very much about absence and presence.
My relationship to my computer and my quilting practices are deeply intertwined and I found this project to be a comedic outlet for me to decompress from looking at the computer while still creating another type of algorithm.