Deirdre Purdy, Oriskany Falls, NY
The American Dream; Blue Birds For Oil
Cotton sheet, fabric paint, bailing twine, fishing line, nylon flag, glass beads, felt, broken necklace, and sparkle glue. Braiding, sewing, quilting, painting, and sparkling.
This sheet started out as a prop in the fall of 2001. I was in the middle of my masters in art education, taking one of Dr Hope Irvin’s creative thinking classes. It started out as a shroud for a Taliban fashion show. The bugs and the “cut off hands” necklace have been removed. The entire SU campus was in a state of shock and dismay over what was happening in out country and what was happening in the Middle East. I honestly feel that Bin Laden attacked the US over oil in a long round about way. I honestly feel that US invasion of Afghanistan and ultimately Iraq was simple over the trade of oil… so many lives, so much money so much damage to our planet. The fabric has been floating around from closet to closet for the past 7 years, never really disappearing but never being used for anything, any purpose. This project seemed like an ideal progression for this fabric. Who knows where it will end up!!!

This winter I spent a lot of time with the square on my lap. Quilting, watching the news, thinking about how oil prices are sky rocketing. The cost of food, processing food, and transporting food has become so unbelievable that we are crazy not to have found a new renewable resource. Simply speaking, the cost of a bale of hay in now between $3 & $6 in upstate NY where hay and grass is abundant. I can’t imagine what it is in Florida, or Afghanistan. As for the Blue Birds, (of Happiness?) Are we really happy when we have ruined our planet, the air, water? I suppose one of the saddest visuals I recollect is of the birds that die from being soaked in oil every time there is an accident with a oil tanker on the ocean. Thank you so much for allowing me to participate, I look forward to the unveiling of the gas station and the reception.