Why red ?
This is going to be a long wordy post, I’m afraid !
I was welcomed into life with a drama and a red flower bunch ; a gift by my grandpa’s excentric 3rd wife, which my mum thought very shocking and unappropriate.
Later on at age 7, I was gifted by my parents with a red bedspread which became my dummy and helped me stop sucking my thumb. I am quite ashamed to reveal that I still have it on my bed, although it has grown very dishevelled with the passing of time. On last year’s Bead Journal Project I was tempted several times to do a page with a piece of that old bedspread, and also to work on the red thread theme.
I love colours and when I started reading the book “A Perfect Red” by Amy Butler Greenfield which had just been translated into French last year, I got really excited and fascinated. I had no idea that the quest for a colour was so intimately linked with political, economical and scientific issues !
Then just before I left for the holidays I read somewhere the claim that black, red and white are the three major colours of mankind. Elsewhere Michel Pastoureau, a French historian specialized in colour, claims that red is THE ultimate colour. Black and white are sometimes said to be no colours. These 3 colours are associated with many symbols ; day, night, bone, earth, blood, life, death, power, desire, church….
Obviously as soon as I had made up my mind I saw red everywhere, in paintings, road signs and even insects !
For me, working primarily from colours rather than concepts is an attempt to harmonize my efforts and also to go towards abstract.
Plus I have decided to buy a minimum of supplies this year, and a very large part of my existing stash is red based.
There you are ! :o)
Added later : the BNF - French National Library organized an exhibition on red and the costumes of designer Christian Lacroix a few years ago. The text is only in French but there are nice pictures of the costumes here.