I awoke from a dream in which I was placing/arranging stitched fabric blocks onto a backing. There were several pieces but the whole was not yet complete. It was clear that this was part of my “mapping” series – the series I have not yet begun. What came out of that were thoughts of Mnemosyne and the River of Memories and that this could work as a basis for a piece or pieces of work. Much like my book for the 2012 Sketchbook Project, the ‘river’ could flow from block to block as the stem did in my sketchbook. Whether the blocks depict “real” memories is not relevant, but they could; happy times in childhood – sitting on the back step shelling peas in the summer sun – playing by the river – music – all sorts of things – probably way too many for one cloth.
I also like the dual meaning of the phrase ‘memory block‘. It appeals to me as for many years I had very little cohesive memory of my childhood years in particular – what memory I had was very patchy. That has since changed. Another story for another time perhaps. So, I have had in mind, pretty much constantly, the idea of these memory blocks or what I am now calling memory cloths. I am not yet ready to begin work on cloth. I am determined to change my ways and use the sketchbook first, preparing and planning, at least working through the ideas that arise – something which does not exactly come naturally to me. . Using the sketchbook is important not only to write all the ideas down but also in terms of developing my own personal iconography.
So many memories. Which ones do I choose? Where do I begin? Where I chose to begin was another mind-map centred on the phrase ‘memory cloths’ – more like word association truth be told – but it works I think, at least as another starting point
The more I think about making Memory Cloths the more I like the idea – they could range in size from the tiniest scrap of fabric to full-sized blocks – after all, our memories come in all shapes and sizes do they not?