I’ve long admired and adored the work of Roxanne Lasky from afar. Knowing that she lives in the vicinity, a couple of days ago, as we barreled down the road headed to Hilton Head Island, I sent her a facebook message asking if there was a fabric store or quilt exhibit I needed to see while we are here. Her response? “You’re passing right by us. Stop by. Lorie McCown is here, and we have wine.”
Now it didn’t work out for me to get over there in time to meet Lorie, but I did spent an hour and a half with Roxanne, her engineer Stu, and Miss Nellie at their beautiful home yesterday, and what a treat that was! I hadn’t been there 30 minutes when we were talking with ease about topics even the best of friends usually avoid – things like organized religion and spirituality. There are few things I enjoy more than meeting other cloth workers, seeing their studio, hearing their stories . . .
As far as art goes, Roxanne has done it all.
made traditional quilts,
owned a fabric store,
and done longarm quilting.
Honoring what beckons to her,
she found her way to houses
and art quilts.
Intuitive stitching, she calls it.
Roxanne makes jackets
that showcase her intuitive stitching.
This piece, that hangs in the bedroom,
is a collage of cloths she’s bundled,
rusted, and dyed, transforming
them all in one way or another.
She and Lori sometimes do collaborative pieces.
Their current collaboration is
on an indigo-dyed doily.
They’ve just begun,
and already it’s a sumptuous piece.
Roxanne is working on a series about
the erosion of memory
and in particular, Alzheimers.
In these pieces, Roxanne stitches
good memories of her mother
along with the sadness of remembering
her mother’s descent into Alzheimer’s
and her fear of developing Alzheimer’s herself.
Having grown up poor,
when her mother married
and found herself with enough pin money
that she no longer had to buy
somebody else’s cast-off shoes,
she indulged in her love of high heels.
New high heels.
This piece is called The Other Oz.
(Roxanne is as good at naming pieces
as she is at conjuring and stitching them.)
As you might imagine,
she finds it necessary to take
frequent breaks from the memory series,
stitching other, unrelated themes.
This piece is her personal totem,
filled with things that
speak to her.
dresses, feathers, and birds.
A former special ed teacher and
an early contributor to The 70273 Project,
and, Roxanne recently met a fella who regaled her
with stories about his son
who has Down’s Syndrome and autism,
and she was so moved, she vows
to make a block dedicated to his son.
After a morning of thrift store shopping
with The Engineer and my mother
(I’ll show and tell you more tomorrow)
and getting to call Roxanne Lasky “Sugar” to her face,,
the sun set on what I’d be hard pressed to call
anything but A Mighty Fine Day.