We move forward from two successful exhibitions in 2016 in Prague and in the USA to the challenge of an exhibition in the Netherlands in the Autumn. We continue to work on A2 sized pieces in portrait format and will be producing four pieces over the year with the theme of 'Freedom'. An essential part of our art is working in series to a common format which does give us all a framework for our creative endeavours.

Saturday, 18 August 2012

Water Under The Bridge

It is very interesting to step back and analyze where creative inspiration begins.  The inspiration for this quilt came when my husband and I took a trip back to our home town, Rexburg, Idaho, in July.  We were eager to escape the crushing heat of the desert and enjoy the relative cool of the high mountain desert in Idaho and the surrounding sights:  Yellowstone Park and Jackson Hole, Wyoming.  It wasn't much cooler in Idaho than it was in Phoenix, although the overnight temperatures were in the 60's rather than the 90's!  We stayed in a motel in Idaho Falls, which is about 25 miles south of Rexburg.  The Snake River runs behind the motel and we were able to go for nice walks in the park that follows the bank of the river though town.  One evening we had walked quite a distance and decided to take a short cut using a railroad bridge that crossed the river.  It's funny how those railroad bridges look much more substantial from the ground!  By the time we were half way across the bridge, we were encountering big holes between the railroad ties, rotten wood and very scary views to the Snake River below.  The distance to the river was not that far--maybe 20 or 30 feet, but the Snake River as it runs through Idaho Falls is very deep and has very treacherous currents.  To fall in the river at that point probably would have meant certain death.  Obviously, we didn't fall into the river, and since trains use that particular bridge every day, I'm sure the bridge was quite sturdy, but looking through those holes with the river rushing beneath us was unnerving.

For my quilt, I used woven strips of commercial fabric as the background--to represent the river and its currents; my own hand dyed silk to represent the rocky riverbed and shore; and some of my own woven fabric to represent the raft that I hoped would pass by if we happened to fall into the water.

Frances Murphy


  1. How brave to actually get to the other side of the bridge - scary if you could see the water below the railway sleepers! Your hand dyed silk is very effective as the stream bed and I liked the optimism of your raft!

  2. Wonderful art and I have to say...the way you wrote the explanation...I was walking across that bridge with you and feeling the apprehension! So glad it all came to such a beautiful ending!

  3. Having walked and (been) driven across a number of bridges in Africa I can undestand what Kelly saw and felt! But leading to the creation of a lovely piece. Well done Frances.

  4. Love the idea of the raft coming to save you!! It has fabulous texture. I've never been to Idaho, but I have visited Yellowstone Park in April. It was pretty cold! Your story makes for an exciting piece.