People came from Delaware, Pennsylvania, Maryland and other places to meet Maria and see her do her work. There is a formality and protocol to traditional quilting that Maria has just ignored in her work, and many of the people who came to see here wanted to know she did her free-motion sewing. They were just fascinated by it. So she showed them.
It was clear I was in the Adirondacks when I went to the sidewalk sale at Indian Lake. There was the feel of poverty, of the hard nature of life in the Adirondacks, of an economy in which people were selling just about anything they could carry to the sidewalk. There were deerheads, bottles, old signs, rifles all kinds of homemade food. I had the sense of a strong community, of a poor place of a unique and isolated and harsh place.
At the Adirondack Museum, a young girl learns how to make a bracelet out of T-shirts. How lucky I was to be walking by during this sweet lesson at the fiber festival there.
Maria had an important day at Blue Mountain Lake in the Adirondacks. She showed her work and demonstrated it at the Fiber Festival at the Adirondack Museum and she was in her element. People showed up in a steady stream to talk to her about her work and see her make her potholders and pillows, quilts and streaming pieces. She would have had a hard time doing this a few years ago, I think – she just wouldn't have – but was at lease and encouraging and welcoming and very happy today. It was sweet to see it. It was also very powerful to see so many people show their delight at her work and how eager they were to see how she had broken away from most of the traditional forms and rules of quilting to have fun and define her own sense of creativity.
We got up before dawn to drive there, got home after dark, stopped for a celebratory burger on the way home. It was an affirmation day for her, a connection to the other artists there and strong evidence that her hard work is being well and lovingly received. That is important to for any artist, I think. I drove to the sidewalk sale at Indian Lake for an hour and I was very struck by the Adirondack flavor of the sales – very inexpensive stuff, very much of the place.
I'm putting up a photo album on Facebook.
Maria had a triumphal and richly deserved day of affirmation showing and demonstrating her art at the Adirondack Museum in Blue Mountain Lake. I got to haul stuff in and out, get lunch and be annoyingly proud. I wandered around a bit taking photos too, some of a sidewalk art show at Indian Lake that was atmospheric, to say the least. I don't really love the Adirondacks, dense, tall, forbidding, with so many abandoned and decaying homes and cabins, so much poverty and struggle. The beautiful mountain area has been utterly abandoned by the outside world, except for some summer tourists and hikers. It is beautiful to photograph though.
I will put up photos of Maria's great day shortly, and an album on Facebook.