Textile exhibition

Recently I was asked to put some of my work in a textile exhibition. Gulp. I was very flattered of course but also a little intimidated. Does anyone not feel nervous about putting there work ‘out there’?  I know I do.  Somehow it’s easier to submit a piece to a juried exhibition because any rejection happens in private.  No-one will know my work was not considered appropriate. I won’t say ‘good enough’ because the piece would not have been submitted if I hadn’t felt it didn’t meet my own standards, therefore for me it was good enough.

So I’m now in the next stage of trying to decide which pieces to hang and get some pieces completed in time. I included a pair that I started and left unfinished before I had to take a break, so at least two years ago. I’ve very much enjoyed getting myself back in touch with the theme I was working on and seeing it through to finished pieces. Giving a title to work is tricky isn’t it?  I thought long and hard about that and finally decided on Stone Stories 1 and 2.  Of course this might change before I actually type up labels… The images came about from my thoughts on old buildings, specifically Romanesque churches, and how the stone still stands as witness to a time and society that has vanished and that we find hard to understand.

Details of some pieces in the photos; I’ll post full pictures once the exhibition is open.  If you live locally to Wivenhoe do come and see ‘Threads’ at the Nottage Maritime Institute on the Quay from  8 to 23 July on Saturdays and Sundays (please check opening times on the website).

Below is the information from the website – I feel very much a newcomer in such illustrious company!

The exhibition showcases the diversity of ideas and range of  techniques used in working with fabrics and textiles.  The exhibitors are all residents of Wivenhoe.
Beth is a freelance textile artist who makes designs for printed fabrics.  There will be printed samples of her designs for sale.
Annie is known for her framed silk stitched collages and her work reflects her love of the sea and the timelessness of landscape. She uses highly decorative techniques crossing the boundary between fine and applied art.
Janet’s love and understanding of colour and geometry are evident in her abstract works while her ability to draw and her imaginative use of fabrics enliven her more complex figurative pieces.
Eliza is a highly regarded textile artist working with words in her hand stitched and embroidered artworks.
Trained at Kensington and Chelsea College of Fashion and Design under Noel Stewart, Lesley produces exquisite bespoke head creations in all materials.
A member of the Embroiderers’ Guild Susan is a teacher of traditional hand embroidery but is also an expert in new techniques.

Art and textiles

The exhibition ‘America After the Fall’ at the Royal Academy featured the iconic work ‘American Gothic’ by Grant Wood.  We finally went to stand and stare back at the enigmatic couple last week.  I wasn’t familiar with his landscape work and it wasn’t what I was expecting (though I’m not absolutely sure just what I was expecting).  It was quite naive in style but what struck me most was just how much like textiles his hills and valleys and planted or ploughed fields looked.  His hills clearly had been over wadded and seemed in places to be splitting apart under the strain!

I can see great possibilities in exploring how to recreate those painted textures in fabric and stitch.

I also enjoyed revisiting my favourite Tudor and Stuart characters and their wonderful costumes at the National Portrait Gallery.  Getting close up to these detailed paintings to appreciate their superb depiction of the lush fabrics and embroidery is always a real treat.