Hollow, But Miraculously I Bear Fruit



Felted Wool Tapestry using plant dyed wool raw wool on a “canvas” of locally sourced wool from the artist’s flock and wool from within the artists “Fibershed,”similar to a water shed, and defined as sourced within a 100-mile radius of the artist’s workshop in Sebastopol, California. Sebastopol, about 40 minutes north of San Francisco, was once famous for its Gravenstein Apples. There is a rich history of apple farming in the west county of Sonoma, and the artist’s studio is located in an old apple processing facility, now converted as a maker space, known as The Barlow.

We are lucky enough to have about a dozen 80-100-year old Gravenstein Apple trees on our farm. Miraculously, while completely hollow inside, these trees continue to bear an abundance of fruit every summer. Can you imagine if we women could bear children at 100 years of age? My mother wasn’t alive when the orchard was planted, yet these trees today bring us Apples for cider, pies, and food for deer, migrating and nesting hungry birds, sheep, donkeys and other wildlife.

This year, in early February, one of my favorite trees keeled over during a crazy, windy storm. I was trying to connect to “her” during the making of HOLLOW, BUT MIRACULOUSLY I BEAR FRUIT.
I was so sad to lose another one, but wanted to celebrate her life, caught in the middle of grief and appreciation. I thought of what she would dream of, if she thought of her friends nearby in the Spring exploding in blossoms like her, if she had memories, or a place to rest after life.

This textile is felted mostly from my flock of Wensleydales and Romney sheep that ate her apples and grazed under her branches on our farm. A small, human attempt to celebrate her life, and honor her passing.

DIMENSIONS: 7’ H x 4.5’ W

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