|Book 1 took 73 days to stitch (via)|
Book 1 is finished, and Book 2 is the longest book. "I need to stitch faster" she says on the project blog, Stitched Iliad.
|In progress - any embroiderer would love to see the back (via)|
Previously, for a project starting in 2011, she has stitched Book I in various ways, aiming to do it "twenty-four times, each time highlighting a different method of analysing the text. My first translation is a simple letter-for-colour substitution, which each letter of the alphabet being substituted for a different colour. When the Iliad was first written down all those years ago, it would not have had the breathings, accents, spaces, or lower case letters which modern classicists would now be familiar with; thus, my translation contains no spaces, punctuation marks, accents, or breathings. Later translations will focus on syntax, metaphor, location, character, etc. Hopefully when it is finally complete, it will be a work of spectacle, aesthetic beauty and complexity worthy of the title of epic."
For instance, here is that work in progress in March 2012 -
Later, doubts set in ..."The aim of the first translation and the aim of all the rest is also different: the first translation dealt with metaphor, and how it reveals but also obscures, it dealt with appreciation and understanding. At the moment, I feel like all the rest are just… infograms. They’re just colour-coded charts showing the frequency of names and places. They’re analysing the text in a way which is supposed to be understandable, which seems almost completely at odds with my intentions in the first piece. ... Why do the same thing 24 times, unless you feel the idea is developing further each time (and I don’t think it will)?"
And so the project changed. I can just about imagine what it will look like when it's finished - amazing, in a word - and perhaps this sample of two of the Book I's, displayed during the Lichfield festival, will help you imagine it too -