Caro Higgs – Water – Lake Baringo

When visiting Kenya a couple of years ago it was depressing to see what damage had been caused by the rising level of water in a couple of the lakes I visited. While there was a shortage of water in the villages the lakesides had been flooded by the lake destroying a lot of farmland and buildings seriously impacting on daily life in the area. The smart tourist hotels on the lakeside were flooded and the new medical dispensary on Kokwe island was washed out not long after it had been built. Without tourism life was hard and the scenery along the lake stark and a little hostile (not that the hippos were bothered!).

I wanted to use this as my starting point, water is necessary for life but also  devastates  life.  Working roughly from a photo I took I have added the flooded rocks and trees, the later now dead, to the water. Painting on a silk cotton fabric I created the water, then I inserted the pieces, the trees already stitched , in to the main fabric and appliquéd them by machine. I added some wool at the base of the rocks to give them a slimy look, this was poetic license because the minerals in the lake don’t encourage growth…

The water is quilted by machine following the lines of colour, I wanted to produce something that showed the moods of the water with the light playing on the surface.

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Close up View:

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  1. Not an easy topic to interpret and also distressing. A great interpretation using different textiles.

  2. It must have been terrifying to see what happened to the lake and it’s surrounding’s. You managed to translate you feelings of what you saw in your artist statement and in an eye-catching quilt. The way you put a little mineral-live in it touches me. You are an artist Caro.

  3. It is incredible the power that can generate water, sometimes it is beneficial but other is devastating. You succeeded perfectly in giving the idea of this destructive movement, through the appropriate use of different fabrics and the skill in painting.

  4. You created a strong response to a very difficult natural occurrence. It’s so difficult to go from an abstract idea and concretise it. Great job.

  5. I particularly like the mosses on the rocks, and the power of the water implied by your quilting.

  6. It is sad to read your statement since environmental issues have always been my concerns, But you did a great job depicting the issue. Let’s pray for our mother earth.

  7. I love your background fabric : it works perfectly to describe the movement of water. The rocks are also realistic and they give more power to the representation of your idea.
    The whole piece is well balanced.

  8. studiociboulette

    Love that sense of rushing water…very nice!

  9. Caro, I really like how you painted the background, well done!

  10. Your interpretation of what you experienced is translated very well in your quilt. You successfully showed us the power of water and its affects on the land which can be beneficial or devastating. Well done.

  11. A vey interesting and thought provoking interpretation of the subject. The colours you have used in the painted background and your quilting design really do give the feeling of swirling flood waters. Well done

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