As some of you know, I’ve been coaching Special Olympics gymnasts since 1995. Ever since I discovered fiber art, I’ve been wanting to create a piece that captures the magic of the Special Olympics, but never quite found a way to express how I feel about the athletes. On Sunday, after a competition between my athletes in NYC and my former team in CT, I wrote about this tension on my SAQA Visioning Page. SAQA (The Studio Art Quilt Associates) offers members an incredible opportunity to set a goal and post regularly about progress. Other members then write in to guide each other and provide advice. Jean Judd responded to my post encouraging me to think about expanding the Special Olympics piece into a series, perhaps even an installation piece like Temporary Shelter.
And then the heavens opened. Of course! I don’t have to create one piece that captures everything wonderful about Special Olympics and its athletes. I can make several – each capturing the story of one athlete. All of a sudden, I have too many ideas and I can’t wait to get started with the design!
Below is the NY gymnastics team at the competition earlier this week – the starting point for my inspiration on this series!