My friend Ellen made this cloth creature in the Art Gallery of Ontario’s cafeteria one day in 2010. As we talked, she sewed the sweet green eyes and fashioned eclectic ear-gills that poke through the pink mesh.
Thread, needles, fabric, ribbons, and socks spilled from two bags I had brought from home, and our heads bent over our work as we talked.
Before we left the gallery, I took some photos of Ellen’s creation. I love how her hand both protects and presents the sockfish. Animated by playful colours and textures, its energy is bright.
Expressing movement, personality, openness — it seems eager to be on its way, tail swishing in the current.
I treasure the memory of that artistic afternoon with Ellen and all the times we met to write, make collages, or exchange ideas. With character, originality, and grace, she practiced friendship as an art form. I’ll never forget Ellen’s creative and loving heart that continues to bless. I miss my dear friend.