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Your Fragility...

'Your Fragility...", 2010, mother's hair from gestation period embroidered on child's garment, velvet, 14 x 15", $6500

 

Part of my ongoing series of human hair embroideries:

www.flickr.com/photos/katekretz/sets/72157607012631722/

 

Upon the occasion of my daughter's birth, I became almost agoraphobic, irrationally figuring that, if we never left the house, nothing bad could ever happen to her.

 

This piece, made within her first six months of life, is a simultaneous invocation for her safety, and a confession of my own newly hyperbolized emotional vulnerability. The hair used is that which was on my head during the time that I dreamt of her, during the time that I carried her. Like rings of a tree, a length of hair embodies the passage of time, carrying a discernible record of an organism's extreme life experiences.

 

The repetitive act of embroidery seems to be made for calming worry... trying to tie things down, sew them in, make them stay.

Embroidering with hair possesses its own unique intensity: each barely perceptible stitch is like a rosary bead, marking a tiny but ardent prayer whispered over and over.

 

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Taken on April 1, 2010