Friday, 29 June 2012

Cried myself out.

Here's the latest handkerchief from the series The Onion Cutters' Club. I'm not so happy with this one; the photo transfer (which is of a photograph from my family archive) warped quite a bit due to ironing.

I quite like the story itself though; my friend recounted to me something her grandmother had said to her during her weepy teenage years; "When I was young like you, I cried all the time, but now I'm old, I've cried myself out."

Soft Words

A few snaps from my workshop at The Mill last night, for their Soft exhibition in which On Being Soft features.

My friends Ruth and Laura joined me, as did a couple of other local ladies.

In accordance with the "soft" theme, I encouraged participants to embroider "soft words" of kindness to themselves or a loved one on to delicate doilies and handkerchiefs. One lady stitched a wedding present.

Saturday, 23 June 2012

Hipster Bingo

No, not this, but typewritten text on a Polaroid!

Cursive text typed with my Olympia SM4 on a Polaroid which didn't expose, no less!

(This was actually meant to be a portrait of Pip, which makes the text I chose all the more apt.)

Thursday, 21 June 2012

Soft: group show at The Mill

Tonight my parents and I paid a visit to the newly installed exhibition at The Mill, Soft, in which my soft sculpture book, On Being Soft, features (that's a lot of "softs"!)

There really is something for everyone at the exhibition; knitted wall hangings, silk Devoré, soft sculpture, even a cross stitched  QR code! In fact, almost every imaginable type of textile craft/art was featured.

This gorgeous quilted wall hanging by Gilli Haqqani, titled Easter at Kew, is an incredibly intricate (and large!)example of free machine embroidery. It was one of my favourite pieces in the exhibition.

Another large piece, Bambooed by Sba Shaikh, showcased silk Devoré, a technique in which a chemical gel is applied to silk, dissolving it and leaving burnt-out sections. Sba used the gel to create bamboo patterns.

This is a working, cross stitched QR code by Kelly Duggan.

This colourful, hugely touchable piece was created by Debs French and Morwenna Brewitt from hundreds of pompoms.

Another colourful piece, a naive elephant  appliqué  constructed from recycled textiles by Gillian Lawrence.

This series was another one of my favourites from the exhibition; stunningly realistic soft sculpture kitchen appliances by the formidably talented Harriet Hammel.

A Grand Lady appliquéd and framed in velvet by Sheila Aslan.

This quilted wall-hanging by Fatima Ahkrah-kha is a little too traditional for my taste, but beautifully executed.

Having a chat with some ladies who were admiring my book!

Tuesday, 19 June 2012

The Onion Cutters' Club

As promised, here are the first two pieces from my new project, The Onion Cutters' Club. As you may guess, this project is all about weeping; sad (or funny) stories of crying. The title is a reference to The Onion Cellar, a chapter from The Tin Drum by Günter Grass (a play based on the chapter, also named The Onion Cellar, was written by Amanda Palmer of The Dresden Dolls.)

The first embroidery is a title piece for this project; an illustration of a pair of bloodshot eyes crying over an onion accompanied by the project's title.

The first (true) story I have illustrated is a very sad, yet also rather humorous one.

The text reads "I was wandering, distraught, melancholy and alone, through the city at night. A HUGE moth ambled across the street... when a bus flattened it. I burst into tears."

Friday, 8 June 2012

Working on a new project

All will be revealed soon.

Text, Texture, Texere

On Friday the 1st I was in Falmouth for my class' final showing of work.

On Being Soft was debuted (it's now been dropped off at The Mill ready to be exhibited)whilst we were amassed on cushions in a tiny room, sharing homemade cake. Both the book and the cake seemed to go down well (one of my tutors had two pieces!)

My favourite of the other works shown was Natt's installation of texts written in Braille.

These were created in a variety of media, from drawing pins pushed into a globe (which read, in Braille, "an arm's length of mountains and waves"), to nails hammered into a plank of wood, to Braille written on card with a Braille writer.

The beauty of this piece cannot be expressed in a photograph; it has an interesting dialogue with the previous piece, as the bumps of the Braille beneath the pages are akin to the mountain ridges of the globe.

This piece explored the tactile qualities of Braille and skin.

Texere made use of an unread book from our first-year reading list; there was a nice relationship between mine and Natt's showings, as we both explored text, texture and texere (in On Being Soft, I did this particularly on this page).

A photograph of me doing what was instructed in a previous piece and "touching the art"! This piece read in Braille "touch hands".

You can see more of Natt's writing here.