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Pamela Allen Celebration! artwork

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Pamela Allen:  Three Women at the Salon - Gothic

Three Women at the Salon - Gothic
H46 x W31 inches
2009


Materials & Techniques

Recycled and commercial fabrics. Hand raw edge appliqué, surface embroidery, machine free motion quilting. Found object embellishment.

Inspired by  medieval manuscript illuminations, I envision ladies at the hair salon . What better place to arrange their elaborate hairdos and show off rich embroidered clothing? The seated one is admiring her new "do". The one at the counter, which was inspired by a pinched little figure on a Medieval column, holds a  1940's vintage roller. The one in the rear is more akin to a Gothic fairy tale figure...maybe a wicked step mother?  

 

 

 

Pamela Allen: Three Women at the Nursery - Moghul

Three Women at the Nursery - Moghul
H31 x W47 inches
2009


Materials & Techniques

Recycled and commercial fabrics. Hand raw edge appliqué, surface embroidery, machine free motion quilting. Found object embellishment.

This was inspired by the East Indian Mogul miniature paintings circa 1000 A.D.  In these gorgeous little paintings, beautifully dressed women are often depicted in their spectacular gardens.  Ladies are choosing their bedding plants for their gardens at home. I can visualize this, as gardens depicted in Persian and Indian miniatures are lush and meticulously planned. I try to describe that in the garden under the canopy with a lot of hand done top stitching..   

 

Statement:

There is always the dilemma of subject matter for artists.  I am not immune to anxiety when one series seems to have reached a conclusion, and I am faced with getting a new idea!  Fortunately I got on a roll, as a result of doing a series of small works about Halley's comet throughout history. I chose certain times in history when the comet was visible which gave me the excuse to emulate the historical style of the time.  That idea has continued more recently, with more complex and larger pieces. And speaking of anxiety, I was then faced with making a credible image that nevertheless could not be construed as copying or appropriating a Master's style. One solution for me, was to imagine the scenario as if it were occurring today. I am hoping this makes the work contemporary yet still an affectionate comment on art history and its beauty. As I am attracted by highly decorated art genres, it's not surprising that I have chosen eras and styles that are particularly rich and gorgeous. It also keeps me interested in the work by using fabrics that seem incongruous with the subject. Thus the Indian women wear clothing made from recycled Indonesian sarongs. The Gothic salon contains polyester, bathrobe velour and upholstery fabrics.