adventures in enamelling, stories, music and travel
I have been going to Wiscon now for a number of years, and I have re-connected with my inner feminist in a way that has been very creative, if sometimes uncomfortable. Growth is always a little uncomfortable though, so I think of that as a good thing.
But there was no discomfort at all when I was called and asked if I would be interesteded in making the Tiptree Award! I was delighted!
The Tiptree Award is given to a science fiction or fantasy book that expands or explores our understanding of gender. The aim of the award is not to look for work that falls into some narrow definition of political correctness, but rather to seek out work that is thought-provoking, imaginative, and perhaps even infuriating. Tiptree Award winners are always given an original work of art, commissioned and inspired by their book.
I was asked to make something for Caitlin R. Kiernan’s “The Drowning Girl”. It is an introspective tale told by a classic unreliable narrator – she doesn’t even trust herself. It is the interior life of a girl who is trying to make sense of her past, of traumatic events that have shaped her, and put them into a perspective of meaning. There is lots of provocative imagery – wolves, forests, autumn leaves, red cloaks, ravens, the moon and the sea. It is a compelling and yet dreamlike journey. My head immediately filled with ideas. I was torn between making jewellery and making a framed panel – so in the end, I did both!
I struggled with how to integrate the two – as I wanted the piece of jewellery to easily mount on the panel, and yet also be easily worn. In the end, I used high powered magnets which made the piece both wearable on any kind of fabric and simply returned to its spot on the panel.
I was sad that I didn’t get to meet Caitlin, as she wasn’t able to come to WisCon where the Award is presented, but I hope she is as happy with it as I was in reading her book!