Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Perfect day for a road trip

Yesterday was a gorgeous day and Ray and I drove over to Central Oregon to visit our friend, Jeri Flom at the Caldera Conference Center near Sisters, Oregon. In the summer Caldera is an arts camp for children and young people. In the winter they offer month long artists residencies. Jeri is one of the resident artists for March. We were unable to attend the open house that was held on Saturday, so we decided to go for a visit yesterday.

It was about a three hour drive from Portland and a day that filled my heart with memories of bright, clear, sunny high desert winter days of my youth. The mountains glowed, the snow was dazzling, the sky was the bluest of blue. We found our way to Caldera, parked and entered the huge and beautiful Hearth building, which is the first thing you encounter. Out the back we followed the pathway to the studios.

We quickly found Jeri puttering away in her huge, light-filled studio.

Jeri's work is extremely painstaking, consisting of threads, blended and stitched heavily, creating a mat of shaded color and layered texture. She rented a van to transport her supplies and equipment to the studio. Her assortment of thread, alone, is mind-boggling.

Much of the work she is doing is experimenting with different thread combinations and creating small samples for future reference. These are sky samples using different threads and background materials.

More samples. Using a photo for inspiration.
At the right in the photo above is the start of a new piece. She was a little disappointed that she has not created more large work in her three weeks, so far. I was pretty impressed with all the samples. These will be reference material for her work for years to come.

The resident artists are each provided a large studio in which to work and a small A-frame cabin where they live for the month. Jeri's cabin was cozy, with a wood stove and view of the creek.

I was totally taken with everything I saw here. What a treat it would be to spend a month just taking in the beauty and creating. Tomorrow I will post more about the facility. To see more of Jeri's work and her thoughts on the residency experience, visit her blog here.


  1. Anonymous10:40 PM

    Wow! So sorry I couldn't join you! Jeri's experiments and experiences are amazing! Wish I could have seen in person! Beth

  2. Wow! I don't know what was more breath taking, the scenery or Jeri's art. I love our corner of the world. Where else can you drive a couple of hours and be at the ocean, mountain top, or desert? Jeri's work is amazing. I just cannot wrap my brain around the fact that it is done with thread. Thanks for the visual delight!

  3. beautiful views and amazing stictches

  4. What an inspiring place to work.
    I love her work and cannot wait to see more.