Gramma Emily and I

When people remark upon my creativity— particularly my capacity for making something with what is available, for seeing the use in something most would not—I know that I owe this particular quality to my grandmother. She was obscenely talented at making things. It was at her side that I learned to turn catalogs into paper dolls, tuna fish cans and carboard into doll furniture, and spin all kinds of other straw into gold. I never learned to sew as well as she, nor keep as lovely a house, but I like to think that her keen eye for color and her ability to make something out of almost nothing lives in me.

Gramma Emily died on Thursday after a bad fall resulted in complications. She was about to turn 95 in a few days.

After I finish my work at the computer today, I will open my sewing machine, dump out my basket of scraps and random rescued clothing, and I will see what I can make today. And I will raise my glass of wine to my gramma in gratitude for all her care for me, and for the things I learned from her.

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viola moriarty

(American, b. 1958)
Modern Expressionist Painter
2012-13 Recipient of the Pollock-Krasner Foundation Grant

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Current and ongoing: New Works, Allegro Ristorante in Bennington on Main Street.

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