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24h x 24w tea bags .embroidery thread, and beeswax on panel
40h x 30w x 3d - tea bags, thread, and beeswax hanging from antique metal fixture
40h x 20w x 1d - coffee filters and beeswax in wire - free hanging organic shape
80h x 24 diameter- tea bags, thread, tea tags, and beeswax. - free hanging organic shape that moves in the breeze. The top tiers are used bags with wax, middle is used, no wax, bottom is unused, unwaxed.
“Whither resorting from the vernal heat
Shall old acquaintance old acquaintance greet,
Under the branch that leans above the wall
To shed his blossom over head and feet.”
– The Rubaiyat of Omar Al Khayyam
Drinking tea is a tradition that's said to date back to 2737 BCE, when, according to legend, Chinese emperor Shennong found his hot water was greatly improved when a dried leaf fell from a plant into his cup. Since then, tea drinking has spread around the world, its recipes and preparations evolving along the way.
I am drawing upon this deep cultural lineage of connection to others through sharing tea by creating art and conversion through used teabags. Each bag is dried, carefully opened and cleaned out, flattened and hand-stitched together, then preserved in beeswax. I often use either the thread collected from from the tea bags themselves or red thread which also symbolizes connection, not only to each other, but also to our ancestors before us and can mark ancient teachings and deep blessings.
“The first time you share tea you are a stranger. The second time you take tea, you are an honored guest. The third time you share a cup of tea, you become family.” (Pakistani tradition)