Dorothy Caldwell
Human Marks:
Drawing, Stitching, Batik, and Bookmaking

Session One - June 11-17, 2017
Session is Full - Wait List

Course Description
The marks we make record time and human energy. Working with paper and cloth, participants in this workshop will examine different kinds of marks including stitching, resist and batik, drawn and painted marks, and more unconventional marks such as burning, piercing, and mending. Each of these will address a different aspect of physical movement and gesture that through time and repetition evolve into richly activated surfaces and a collection of "pages". Simple bookbinding techniques will be demonstrated for constructing book forms from the pages created, and participants will be able to expand on workshop experiments, applying them to their own materials and imagery. Resource material will include digital presentations and examples.

Artist's Biography
Dorothy Caldwell is a graduate of Tyler School of Art in Philadelphia and presently maintains an active international exhibition and teaching schedule from her studio in Hastings, Ontario. She has carried out research projects in Japan and India, and has worked "on site" in the Australian outback and the Canadian Arctic. She is the recipient of grants and awards including the prestigious Bronfman Award given to one Canadian craftsperson each year. Her work is included in private and permanent collections including the American Museum of Art and Design, Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, the International Quilt Museum and Study Center University of Nebraska, The Canadian Consulate Bangkok Thailand, and Canadian Museum of Civilization among others.

Artist's Statement
My work is an ongoing investigation of the meaning of “place”. I investigate how humans mark and shape the land and how these human marks interact with natural geology. I am intrigued by maps and have come to see the dichotomy between conventional mapping and my personal mapping that identifies intimate landmarks and simplifies them into abstract shapes and textures. Through gathering, touching, and recording the contents of the landscape, I form a sense of place for myself.

My vocabulary of marks has evolved out of researching textile traditions, looking at women’s domestic samplers, and studying historic handbooks. I have acquired a deep respect for the way cloth behaves. Cloth is fragile. It breaks down, wears out, and is then repaired and reconstructed. These sensibilities resonate for me: Cloth is very powerful when it retains traces of its previous life, gathers history and becomes something new.

Website: Dorothy Caldwell Website

Supply List
Art & Hardware Supplies

  • Black India Ink: one small bottle
  • Sponge Brush approximately 1” wide
  • Roll of Masking Tape
  • Assortment of artist’s brushes (if you have them) /
  • X-acto Knife for cutting stencils
  • Hammer & 1 large nail
  • 2 Cottage Cheese or similar containers with a flat bottoms
  • One taper candle (NOT a tea light)
  • Stick type Incense and matches (not for use in classroom)
  • Sponge
  • Gloves for dyeing
  • A brush extender approx. 3' (this could be a dowel, bamboo tomato stake, or a stick)
  • String... Heavier weight and not plastic

Sewing Supplies

  • Sewing Kit with 6 sewing needles with eyes large enough to accommodate embroidery thread. (‘Chenille’ needles work well for this.)
  • Sewing Scissors
  • Thimble (if you use one)
  • 2 skeins of off white stranded embroidery thread
  • 1 skein Black stranded embroidery thread.
  • 2 to 6 skeins of embroidery thread colours of your choice (or more if you already have on hand).

FABRIC: Please cut these pieces before the workshop to save time. Sizes are related to the book project.

  • Three (3) pieces of BLACK COTTON: 4 ½ ” X 16”. (please buy fabric that a needle passes through easily - tight weaves like Kona are difficult to sew)
  • One (1) piece of bright SOLID COLOUR COTTON: 4 ½” X 16”.
  • One piece of scrap cotton in any colour approximately: 4” X 36”.

Optional Materials

  • Apron
  • Tapestry Needle with blunt tip for bookbinding
  • ‘Bone folder’ for bookmaking
  • Throughout the workshop you will be given a series of exercises carried out on pages that will become part of your final book. You could also bring with you materials that you already have, for possible use in the making of your final book. Items past participants have brought include (but are not necessarily limited to): transparent fabrics, dress maker patterns, stitching thread, hand made papers, maps, dyed fabrics, paper bags, water colours, and inks......these should be materials that you use in your work or that you have around your house or studio

There will be an opportunity to share your work with the group. If you would like to do this please bring up to five images on a memory stick (to be projected), on your laptop or tablet, real work, or photographs. Each person will have up to five minutes to present their work. Please respect the group by adhering to the time limit.

Begin your application process now!






Dorothy Caldwell

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