Balancing Act - Artwork Details 

Art by: Misty Cole, Doria Goocher, Pat Bishop, Elaine Millar, Laura Wasilowski
Balancing Act

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Selected Artists and WorksClick any image to view full-screen.


Three Handstands Judith AhlbornThree Handstands
Judith Ahlborn  •  Littleton, Colorado, USA
24.5 x 18.25 inches  

I have a lifelong love of gymnastics and respect for all women athletes. This is a celebration of women in sports and the tremendous effort it takes to not only balance one’s family with work, social, or school life, but to add the challenge of keeping up with a busy training schedule. Since the 1970’s women have enjoyed more freedom in competing in sports at the international level and professionally, as well as earning athletic scholarships to college that were not available to our grandmothers.


I Rather Be - Ruth BakerI Rather Be
Ruth Baker  •  New Smyrna Beach, Florida, USA
19.5 x 17.5 inches

My quilts are inspired by my need to see people smile. I like to bring back memories of experiences that represent the good side of life.

Lillian`s Expectations - Bobbi Baugh Lillian's Expectations
Bobbi Baugh DeLand, Forida, USA
41 x 30 inches  

She came of age in 1917, moved from a northern farm to a southern city, and married a bigger-than-life man. What expectations she had to balance! She carried society’s expectations—to adapt, to accept, to fill an assigned role; the ones she had for her own life; and the ones she had for her offspring. Family photos and stories provide only clues about the weight of this balancing act, and the costs of the process.

Sister Nature - Pat BishopSister Nature

Pat Bishop  •  Appleton, Wisconsin, USA
24 x 18 inches  


Sister Nature is a Picasso-ish self portrait. I enjoy nature and birds and wouldn’t mind if a bird made a nest in my hair. This piece brings to mind the dilemma we all struggle with as we to try to balance our love and appreciation of nature versus our struggle to live comfortably without endangering that natural world.

Seeking Balance - Debra BlakeSeeking Balance
Debra Blake Santa Barbara, California, USA
51 x 37 inches  

Capacity to pursue one’s most personal goals can be fleeting amidst the sea of demands that make a life. This work reflects on four particular aspirations, pregnant with promise, set apart and made foremost, while still honoring the less enticing commitments—striving for equipoise between desire and duty.

Waning Crescent Meditation - Deborah Boschert Waning Crescent Meditation
Deborah Boschert Lewisville, Texas, USA
60 x 24 inches  

At my core is a continuing desire to foster growth. Progress, change, and nourishment take different forms throughout the stages of life and require a broad vision. Sometimes I just need to stand still and be aware of all the possibilities around me.

Waxing Crescent Endeavor - Deborah BoschertWaxing Crescent Endeavor
Deborah Boschert Lewisville, Texas, USA
60 x 24 inches  

I embrace the challenge to rise to my potential. The process of growth and change takes different forms through the stages of life and requires a broad vision. Sometimes I just need to stand still and be aware of the possibilities around me.

Voluta #3: Release - Sandra Palmer CiolinoVoluta #3: Release
Sandra Palmer Ciolino Cincinnati, Ohio, USA
23 x 40 inches  

Life events often create challenges in achieving physical, emotional, and spiritual balance.

Centered - Misty M. ColeCentered
Misty M. Cole Bowie, Maryland, USA
40 x 40 inches  

I think of my life as divided into many compartmentalized sections, with my art soul at the center. The small circles are things on my to-do list swirling around my mind; and the quilted, almost invisible circles are all the things I am ignoring or forgetting or am afraid of forgetting.

Judy - Jennifer DayJudy
Jennifer Day  Santa Fe, New Mexico, USA
41 x 40 inches  

I met Judy one day in the checkout line at a grocery store. She is the epitome of a woman balancing her life. Is she working because she enjoys people or because the state of her finances does not meet her needs? I was immediately drawn to the stories that her countenance tells. Her wrinkles are many, but also are graceful and emblematic of her fabulous personality.

Inner Balance 2 - Regina DunnInner Balance 2

Regina Dunn • DeLand, Florida, USA
30 x 23 inches  

We’re surrounded by chaos and struggle to deal with demands that are put on our shoulders. Throughout history women have faced this with amazing grace. We have the ability to take in the chaos, process it internally, and focus on what’s necessary to keep an inner balance and maintain an internal peace.

Woman`s life - a balancing act - 1 Bodil Gardner Woman's life - a balancing act - 1

Bodil Gardner Lystrup, Denmark
51 x 40 inches  

Women’s lives are a frequent theme of my quilts. In 1985, I actually made a quilt entitled ‘Woman’s life, a balancing act’. So many wishes to fulfill, so many dreams to pursue, so little time of your own. Little has changed since then.


Release - Doria A. GoocherRelease
Doria A. Goocher  San Diego, California, USA
43 x 34.5 inches 

We cut and shape our goals. Goals take time but eventually they find their completion. Often, we start with a suble shade that advances to a deeper concentration of color. We review, revise, redo our concept before we settle on a permanent solution. This process often becomes a balancing act. This design shows the process of cut out goals that reach their destination and finally achieve a total balance.


Waking Up To Music - Gunnel HagWaking Up To Music
Gunnel Hag  Toronto, Ontario, Canada
18.5 x 14.5 inches

My mother was one of the first female organists in Sweden. Nobody cared if we could tell what day of the week it was by the dinner she prepared. The beauty of waking up to her playing the piano lives on in my memory more than any food.


Baby...Briefcase - Betty Hahn • Sun City, Arizona, USA 36 x 36 inches - $4200Baby...Briefcase
Betty Hahn  Sun City, Arizona, USA
36 x 36 inches

Many women care for their children and also have a job or a career. They must organize their time in order to fulfill their obligations. Emotions must be managed as well.

My Dear Old Girl - Phillida HargreavesMy Dear Old Girl
Phillida Hargreaves  Kingston, Ontario, Canada
16.5 x 22.5

During World War I, my grandmother had to perform a daily balancing act while her husband was at the front. She raised their young son alone and maintained the household, at the same time controlling her worries about her husband and offering him the sanity of a home life through her letters, which she wrote every day. Some of his letters to her remain in the family. Unfortunately, hers do not.

Pink Lady II - Joan Hug-ValeriotePink Lady II
Joan Hug-Valeriote    Guelph, Ontario, Canada
43.5 x 12

For elderly women with osteoporosis, just staying upright is a balancing act.

Working the Earth - Susan JackanWorking the Earth
Susan Jackan    Madison, Wisconsin, USA
34.5 x 23.5 inches

This piece is based on a photo of my grandparents taken by my mother in 1941.  Grandma worked tirelessly: gardening, baking, milking cows, and sewing.  In her youth she fashioned wedding dresses, and later, lovely frocks for me. I owe my love of stitching and creating art to her.

Juggling Life`s Priorities - Elke JordanJuggling Life's Priorities
Elke Jordan     •  Bethesda, Maryland, USA
20 x 25 inches

In this quilt I describe the challenges of balancing priorities throughout life.  Something always has to give, especially as we age. Sometimes letting out a scream is the only way we can cope.

Hala Vara Karu Kathleen Kastles     • Wailuku, Hawaii, USA 40.5 x 31 inches - $6730Hala Vara Karu
Kathleen Kastles    Wailuku, Hawaii, USA
40.5 x 31 inches

In undeveloped parts of the world, many working mothers must bring their children along to their jobs. This working Indian mother has just nursed her infant and suspends him in a makeshift hammock to nap while she carries stacks of bricks balanced upon her head to a nearby construction site.

Bath Time - Linden LancasterBath Time
Linden Lancaster   •  Picola, Victoria, Australia
51 x 38 inches

Pioneer outback women were called to balance: making do and surviving/forging a legacy living in islolation/creating a new community using precious resources like food and water/conserving such things, working alongside husbands/nurturing emotional, educational and spiritual needs of children. We honor and value their fortitude and ingenuity.

Swagger—100 Women in Congress Elaine MillarSwagger—100 Women in Congress
Elaine Millar  Portland, Oregon, USA
39 x 29 inches

In 2014, for the first time in American history, 100 women walk the halls of Congress. These women have given a lot to be there—absence from family and other life activities, the need to deal with gender bias, not being a part of the “good old boys” network. They persist.
 
Represented by 100 colorful circles placed on a cloth printed continuously with the number 100, they connect to each other. There remains room for the next 100. My hope is that it will not take as long.

SchemaDoodle - Susan PolanskySchemaDoodle
Susan Polansky    •  Lexington, Massachusetts, USA
25 x 34.5 inches

This schema represents my personal balancing act. I originally conceived of the idea as an alternative to the typical “about the artist” page for my website.


The Firebird - Sheree RasmussenThe Firebird
Sheree Rasmussen   •  Castleton, Ontario, Canada
58 x 38 inches

The Firebird (she who rises from the ashes to recreate), represents women’s lives in the sense that their energy is so often consumed in service of family and community, but can be reborn to fulfill their primordial need to create anew.

The Firebird (or Phoenix) exists in many mythologies: Middle Eastern, East Asian, Native American, Slavic, African, etc. A sacred creature, she has magical powers, and though distinctly female, has both male and female characteristics. She is beautiful, powerful and dignified, and is often faced with a difficult quest. 

My Circle of Life = Mary RuzichMy Circle of Life
Mary Ruzich  Medford, Oregon, USA
38 x 38 inches

Every day I walk through a labyrinth of many roles and responsibilities that arise in my life. My circle shows the universality of this situation; as women, we morph and flex with grace or anxiety from moment to moment.  Life comes our way and we embrace it.

My Circle of Life - Mary Ruzich • Medford, Oregon, USA 38 x 38 inches - $1500Amelia Earhart's Tenacity
Sara Sharp  Austin, Texas, USA
46.5 x 31.5 inches

Amelia Earhart said, “The most difficult thing is the decision to act. The rest is merely tenacity.” As a record-breaking, style-setting, female pilot, she altered perceptions of women’s roles. I have surrounded her image with art deco designs representing her era. Ocean waves symbolize her tragic final flight. 

An Autobiography - Daniela TigerAn Autobiography
Daniela Tiger •  Toronto, Ontario, Canada
44 x 28 inches

Throughout my life I have had to work hard to balance my internal voices with those that are considered acceptable to others. Learning to be the chameleon early, I adjusted to fit. Balancing my truth with those of others is a delicate dance, requiring many balls, well-juggled.

Angelina`s Eggs - Nancy Turbitt Angelina's Eggs
Nancy Turbitt •  Smithfield, Rhode Island, USA
45 x 32 inches

An immigrant from Italy, Angelina Membrino had no formal education. When my grandfather retired, she needed to supplement their income. Peddled from door to door, her eggs became known for their size. Angelina was one of many in her generation to exemplify the term “cottage industry.”

Hands Off - Maggie VanderweitHands Off
Maggie Vanderweit • Fergus, Ontario, Canada
56 x 26 inches

Regarding our empty nest, I am of two minds: celebrate or grieve. It’s a delicate balance, but I’m learning to be a “hands off” parent now, cheering from the sidelines. We’re enjoying our new life as a couple and the evolving adult relationships with our wonderful children and their partners.

Lacking Gravity - Laura Wasilowski Lacking Gravity

Laura Wasilowski • Elgin, Illinois, USA
41 x 37 inches

At our house we lack gravity. It’s the only way to deal with this hectic life. 

Hot Flash 2 - Nancy WoodsHot Flash 2

Nancy Woods • Lubbock, Texas, USA
47 x 29 inches

With the average age of menopause being 51, many women are at the peak of their careers when beginning “the change” or “moon of pause.” Some women sail through with minor symptoms. Other women experience more, with hot flashes and night sweats being common. Many women compensate with hormone therapy, natural remedies, or just toughing it out. Other women don’t fare as well, losing sleep and experiencing major lifestyle disruptions. 

Fifty, Female, and Fearless - Kathy YorkFifty, Female, and Fearless

Kathy York • Austin, Texas, USA
48 x 36 inches

As a new decade approaches, my body is beginning to look different with grey hair, new wrinkles, extra weight. I look beneath the surface for the inner qualities that will help me face the challenges ahead.

Balance - Kathy YorkBalance

Kathy York •  Austin, Texas, USA
60 x 24 inches


This work blends a trifecta of symbols: yin/yang, the yoga tree pose, and a fire hydrant. This moment is about integrating the parts of my life and finding that brief moment of balance during times of intense chaos. 


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