Whirlpool Galaxy

Whirlpool Galaxy

43" x 36" Commercial cotton, organzas, yarns, metallic laces, sequins, crystals Heat gun bubbling, metallic paint

Eagle

Eagle

27" x 39" Inspired by Tennyson’s poem "The Eagle". I found this picture of an eagle and it was that moment described in the poem "like a thunderbolt he falls". Layers of dyed fabrics form the bird, which was then lightly stuffed from behind (trapunto).

Faces of the World

Faces of the World

64" x 32" A fascination with the creative costumes of the world led to this piece. Left to right – Japanese, Rajasthani, Zulu, Lisu, Sami, Native American, Samburu, Ukrainian. Hand dyed and commercial fabrics, beads, buttons, assorted embellishments Machine appliqué, machine quilting

Faces of the World, Detail

Faces of the World, Detail

Hilltop City

Hilltop City

52" x 38" Hand dyed and commercial cottons, silks, poly silks, laces Soft edge appliqué, machine quilting

Fishing Village

Fishing Village

41" x 41" Hand dyed cottons and commercial fabrics Piecing, machine embroidery, machine quilting

Exotic Garden

Exotic Garden

30" x 35" Inspired by rainforest flora and fauna. Commercial and hand dyed cottons Soft edge collage appliqué, fabric painting

Exotic Garden, Detail

Exotic Garden, Detail

Green Vase

Green Vase

43" x 55" Hand dyed cottons, silks, poly silks, sheers, laces Layered and scrunched appliqué, hand embroidery, machine embroidery, beading

Forest Floor

Forest Floor

20" x 6" Mixed media Hand embroidery

It's A Jungle Out There

It's A Jungle Out There

21" x 27" A jungle print, "fussy cut" and framed with "attic windows"

Kabuki Warrior

Kabuki Warrior

21" x 25" Hand dyed and commercial fabrics – silks, brocades, cottons Layered, sculpted appliqué

Malachite Rhino

Malachite Rhino

29" x 22" Hand dyed fabrics Sculpted layers, machine quilting

Mediterrania

Mediterrania

35" x 35" I wanted to do a piece with a limited colour palette – a difficult discipline for me. Shades of blue offered the widest range and a white background the best foil. I’m afraid the windows broke the rule – how could I not have a sequined window reflecting the sunlight? Nonetheless I was proud of my restraint! A whole cloth base with architectural details machine appliquéd.

Light of the Garden

Light of the Garden

6" x 8" Mixed media Fabric-printed image, embroidery, beading

My Garden

My Garden

32" x 25" Hand dyed and commercial fabrics, laces, beads, other embellishments Soft edge appliqué, beading, embroidery

Night Visitor

Night Visitor

18" x 17" Padded elephant among dimensional leaves and vines

Mirage

Mirage

33" x 25" Multi-layered background with a variety of cottons, sheers, lamés, etc. Fused appliqué buildings

My grandson Rahul's quilt request was "a galaxy, or a vintage car!" I was in a fix, not really knowing much about either. Then I started looking up galaxies and was blown away by the images, the facts, the figures. Also, the challenge of representing this whirlpool of swirling energy in a soft fabric quilt. I chose a cotton commercial fabric for the background and arranged spirals of organza onto it. I heat gunned the organza to create the effect of swirling, bubbling gas. Many materials formed the arms of the galaxy – yarn, metallic laces, strokes of metallic paint. I finished the piece with a fistful of sequins and crystals.

The Whirlpool Galaxy was first discovered by Charles Messier in 1773. It is 23.16 million light years from earth and has a diameter of 60,000 light years. "It is made of long lanes of stars and gas laced with dust. The arms of the galaxy are star formation factories compressing hydrogen gas and creating clusters of new stars." Fascinating. Thank you, Rahul.

© Copyright Leela Cherian. All rights reserved.