the nightingale (v1)
Paradisaea's entry to The Great Competition of Weavers January 2018
The Nightingale was honoured to receive the 6th place in the voting
Warp: hand painted rose viscose
Weft: hand dyed Suvin cotton
Woven with one of Paradisaea's own fancy twills
One of my most vivid memories of that night is the song of nightbirds.
It was summer, and the city was falling asleep under a heatwave. The upper floors of the hospital were hot and stuffy even in the evening. I had been lost in pain for some six hours straight when they finally decided to give me some medication. It was a peculiar moment, things coming to a halt, the room slowly coming back to focus.
I was lying on the bed, like emerging from a strange dream, resting. Then it hit me, for the first time properly - I realised what was about to happen and how irrevocable it would be.
I was about to give birth for the first time. Lying there, bewildered, I realised that two persons were about to be born. The baby, yes, but in a way me too. When you give birth to your first child you also give birth to a parent, to a mother. In one glorious moment everything will change, you’ll be pushed into a completely unknown roller coaster ride that will never let you go back.
Pondering all this I suddenly noticed that someone had opened a window. The song of nightingales and blackbirds floated in trough the hot and tremoring air, tiny dancing flutes in the night.
Then the pain started flooding in again. Some two hours later it was finally over. They put the baby to my awed and scared skin and I realised it’s possible to be lost and found at the same time. All that mattered was that the child was there, breathing in the nigthingale song, sleeping peacefully in my arms.
Surely, if he felt safe like that, everything would be alright.
The Nightingale is inspired by the memory or the first birth night, symbolising the unforgettable moment when you become a mother for the first time. The colours are based on the song of the nightingale - a visualisation of how the song feels like. It’s a combination of several intense purples and violets paired with bright, light coppers, peppered with light turquoises, pinks and lavenders, symbolising the bright birdsong in the dark night air. The warp is hand painted rose viscose, the weft is hand dyed Suvin cotton. The Nightingale measures 430 cm x 69 cm and has fringed ends. It is woven in a fancy twill.