Cutting + sticking + sewing + baking. My creative life.

The Daughters of Zelophehad

The daughters of Zelophehad were five sisters – Mahlah, Noa, Hoglah, Milcah and Tirzah and their story is in the Bible (Numbers 27).  I really like this story, it’s a kind of smash the patriarchy thing.  They were going to lose everything as their father didn’t have a son to inherit and they knew what they wanted, approached and lobbied Moses and the elders.  There was justice.  It makes me think about what has been taken from women and girls around the world today and the need for justice.
It’s the first piece I finished when I took a Creative Development Course at Studio Eleven (at the Old Print Works in Eastbourne).  

I started by dyeing cotton with Procion dyes in pastel, candy, “silly”, “feminine” colours. To contrast with this I screenprinted stylised figures of the five sisters in darker colours in power stances (running, dancing, pointing, lifting, gesturing).  I just read that back and it sounds like The Spice Girls with Victoria pointing!

I printed background fabric, using tools and needle-nosed bottles to make marks. I painted the sun with dye and acrylic dye paint (which represents the Creator).  I did try to obliquely reference the Cross with strips of darker pink fabric.

I quilted the piece with red/orange/yellow variegated thread in a sunbeam design radiating from the sun.
This is the completed quilt.

I had the quilt hanging in my waiting room at work for a while then I decided to add lettering and make it in to a banner to display during services at the local church I am part of.

I chose the words Rejoice Always from the Bible, 1 Thessalonians 5 verse 16.

Currently we are in lockdown due to the COVID-19 pandemic and our church services are relayed on Zoom, I may put that banner up in the background this week!

Warm wishes

Melanie xx

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