8.75" x 6.75"
$750-- To Purchase Contact 23 Sandy Gallery
The Oxford English Dictionary defines a merkin as “an artificial covering of hair for the female pubic region; a pubic wig for women.” The earliest reference according to the OED is in the 16th century, a time when pubic lice were a common problem and women had to shave their pubic area to eradicate the lice and relieve itching. Prostitutes wore merkins, using them to cover up the marks of syphilis and genital warts so they could appear to be disease-free and therefore still employable. About the same time a lace-edged neck ruff was an accessory worn to announce the wealth and station of the wearer.
Purple Merkin is a one off artist's book. It is constructed to represent both a merkin and a ruff. The silk pages include a number of traditional bawdy English limericks and both body and crab lice.
Charlotte Bird lives and works in San Diego, California. Her work is included in many public and private collections. She is a member of California Fibers, Pacific Quilt Artists, Studio Art Quilt Associates, Surface Design Association, Friends of Fiber Arts International and is on the Board of Quilt Visions.
All images and text copyright the artist. All rights reserved.