This is a contemplative interactive art piece, created and facilitated by Michelle Montjoy from Oceanside California. Viewers of the installation could sit and work on the handbuilt tabletop looms and add to the sculptural form being made from used tshirts. The piece creates a connection of stories, a meditative practice, and a place where comfortable conversations can take place.
I am a maker, a former public school art teacher, a parent and a citizen. I organize socially engaged projects that start with my questions about access, connection, isolation, the passage of time, and the meditation in repetitive actions. I may knit with groups on oversized tabletop looms to make museum installations, kids finger crochet with me using used tshirts to make soft environments to sit, swing and play, or we may consider what we count while needlepointing tally marks on old linens. Participants start by moving their hands, an antithetic approach to many educational models, but a mode deeply invested in women’s history. The flattened hierarchy of sitting around a table embraces sharing stories and laughter. The slight absurdity of the forms we are making gives a freedom to the actions and intentions of the participants, and perhaps an insight into contemporary art. My studio work ranges from room sized installations to tiny embroidery, using form and language to explore my citizenship, my culpability and my frustrations, These studios works often bring me to questions that lead me to a new social project, which leads me to another exploration in the studio and around and around.