Mirjam Pet-Jacobs begins every artwork with working out a theme by means of a brainstorm session and collecting information from newspapers, magazines, the internet. She makes many notes, sketches are kept very simple. Working like this gives her usually enough material to make a series. Themes are usually found in daily life: “I am interested in the way people react upon one each other and how they respond to certain situations. Personal and emotional involvement is transformed to a more general, global level. Images have metaphorical meanings. By peeling off my observations till the core and literally rebuilding them in layers I reflect the different levels on which humans act: open or closed, honest or insincere. Interesting is in how far a person, including myself, dares to open up, making himself vulnerable. I often make use of transparent elements in my work, like sheer fabrics or self-made machine lace, to emphasize the vulnerability of life. The main material I work are fabrics and threads. I love its different tactile qualities, its flexibility, and its feminine, sometimes even erotic, aspects. At the same time I show respect to the historical connexion between women and textiles. The art I make is slow art. It is a response to our fast moving, technical, impersonal age. I make unique objects, created with dedication, passion and love.”
Social network systems, like Facebook, Myspace, Hyves, LinkedIn, are very popular nowadays. People apparently want to share all kinds of things with others, the so-called ‘Friends’. Some Friends post a lot on their walls, and send a lot of messages, others are very silent. Interesting phenomenon. Are these the new ‘Friends’ of the future and how much are these ‘Friendships’ worth? Can they be a replacement of real life friends?
After a brainstorm on and collecting information for the theme “Friendship” in digital social networks, I decided to concentrate on the different kinds of profiles people set up and information they post.
I made a template/stencil of a profile head, to be used for machine lace making and stencilling with fabric paints. This would provide for the necessary repetition of forms in the artwork. The stencil is used to stencil profiles with textile paint on fabric. The template is used to draw profiles on water soluble, that will be filled in with machine lace embroidery.
For the colours of the machine lace heads I chose the colours of the colour wheel, being symbolical for the diversity of humankind and characters.
Sorting out the background fabrics for the machine lace profile heads. They would be colourful too, opposed to the neutral white-blue profiles that stand for the people who give very little information and are very inactive on the digital network.
The profile section before and after the placement of the machine lace heads.
The left side of the design would be a news wall, with standard texts one can find on the networks. I stencilled and stamped the words on white fabric. Later, I added appliquéd heads and needle drawn symbols (see photos 13 and 14).
After assembling the quilt top and the sandwich I free motion quilted with horizontal lines on the text section and with echo lines around the heads, like ‘news waves’ coming from them. I always use free motion quilting as much as possible, because I like the ‘handwriting’ effect that comes from it, with slight irregularities in the stitching, like in real handwriting.
Jack and Jill are Friends 2009
W108 x H102 cm cotton, machine lace P=m, Embr=m, Q=m, A=m, stamping, stencilling
The Dutch textile artist Mirjam Pet-Jacobs has always been occupied with art. Besides obtaining a MA in English, she followed basic and speciality courses at art academies in the Netherlands. Since 1989 she has been focussing on textile materials and techniques. Mirjam’s layered wall hangings, sculptures and collages have been admired in many museums, galleries and art quilt exhibitions all over the world: Textile Museum Tilburg, NL, Museum Rijswijk, NL, Quilt National 2005, USA, Quilt 2005, UK, and solo exhibitions at Het Waalres Museum-NL in 2004, the Aboriginal Art Museum Utrecht, NL in 2005, and the 11th European Patchwork Meeting, Val d’Argent in 2005. In 2009 she was invited to exhibit in Taiwan, and in 2007 she participated in the 6th Biennale Internazionale dell’Arte Contemporanea in Florence. Her artwork has been awarded, amongst others, with the Doris Winter prize for innovation of material technique and concept at the 4th European Quilt Triennial in 2009, the SAQA Cream award at Art Quilts Elements, Wayne, PA, USA, in 2008, the 2nd prize at Art Quilt Lugano in 2007, and, in 2003, the 1st prize at the 2nd European Quilt Triennial. ……….find out more http://www.mirjampetjacobs.nl