Op Art Revisited


Fall is upon us and it’s time to buckle down and get those “only in my head” projects out of my head and onto my wall. Sorry, kid, but the lazy days of summer are over.

 My art quilt group had decided that our latest challenge would be “Black, White, Grey and a Touch of Color.” I immediately thought about the very graphic Op Art of the 1960’s, a favorite of mine.  Design decision made.

This Op Art inspired piece came together pretty quickly once I put pencil to my trusty graph paper and designed the four optical illusion blocks which make up the finished piece.

I paper-pieced each section using graph paper as my foundation so as to get  exact 1/2″ wide stripes.  Once I had the sections completed, it was time to pin, pin, pin all of those intersections and sew as near-perfect as I could manage.  Because I’m so anal, I also did a lot of ripping until I was satisfied with the overall appearance.  Unfortunately, “close enough” is never good enough to my eye.

Another unanticipated problem is the dizzying effect Op Art has on the eyes.  Yes, these four blocks are perfectly square even though they look wonky.

Once the piecing of the blocks was complete, the fun began anew with the binding.  I decided the only option I would be happy with was to change the color of the binding as necessary as I bound each side of the blocks.

The red connecting pieces were once part of a bamboo place mat.  After disassembling the place mat, I spray painted the pieces and attached them across and down the center of the piece to connect all four blocks together. This proved to be the most difficult part of the project, an all too common side effect of working way outside the box.

With fingers crossed, I hung my version of Op Art entitled “Illusions”, stepped back and smiled.  I like this one in spite of its nausea inducing effect.  Now, on to the next challenge…..Adirondack Flora and Fauna.  First, I have to do a Google search to see what the heck fauna means.