Looking Back: Garden in the City

A post in an occasional new series – looking back at artworks or mediums I worked in earlier in my artist years.

Here I show you a fabric wall hanging from 2000.

I worked in this medium when I first started making art. I constructed appliqued fabric wall hangings, at first using hand stitching and later switching to free-motion machine stitching. My fabric work spanned the time frame from about 1995 to 2001.

This piece, Garden in the City, was made for an exhibit as part of Art in City Hall, Philadelphia, PA. I submitted an application to participate, was chosen, and was assigned a community garden in the city to portray. My location was Glenwood Green Acres in North Philadelphia.

I went out to the garden in June 2000 to take photos. The location was in a neighborhood that had been in decline for some time. It was a typical Philadelphia scene – factory building towering over streets of small rowhomes originally built for the workers. At this time, the factory in the photos was abandoned and the garden was on the site of another factory that had been demolished. The Amtrak rail line goes right behind the garden.

I created the wall hanging over the fall of 2000 and it was exhibited in early 2001, January, I think. Philadelphia’s City Hall is an enormous building in the middle of Center City and is a landmark location for us here. Now most of its functions are handled in more modern surrounding buildings, but City Council still meets there.

The exhibit area had large cases on two different floors. My artwork was about 30″ x 40″. I was also just starting to work in paper collage, and I included two collages with the fabric piece. I can”t find photos of them or I would show them, too. I do remember that one of the collages featured the lovely cabbages you see in a photo above.

Here is the piece:

Garden in the City small 2000001

Philadelphia has many community gardens and Glenwood Green Acres still exists. The surrounding area is changing as redevelopment amends the area but this garden looks pretty much the same 20 years later, from the pictures I can find.

4 thoughts on “Looking Back: Garden in the City

  1. Claudia McGill Post author

    Thank you. Looking for the photos and so on of this piece really took me back. It has been a lot of miles on the art trail since then. I liked this piece and I felt I had done a good job then and I still do. It was probably one of the last ones I did, so I feel I went out on a good note.

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