A blog about making art and other things using cloth, paper, paint, colour, stitch, and all sorts of exciting techniques, some of which I'm sure I still have to discover! I hope that the joy all this gives me is visible in what you can see here.

Friday, 11 October 2013

Ally Pally, Knitting, Stitch and Inspiring Textiles.

Outside the entrance to the Knitting and Stitching Show, 2013 at Alexendra Palace today, was this black cab, wrapped up snugly in all this incredible knitting! Unfortunately, as it was beginning to rain, I didn't hang about, and forgot to find out any details.

Last year I was lucky enough to do a five day workshop with the Canadian textile artist Dorothy Caldwell, whose work I just absolutely love. She is at Ally Pally this year, exhibiting some of her fantastic work called 'IN PLACE' and I've included some photos here. I managed to write down the titles of most pieces, but unfortunately there are one or two that I missed, including the one above.

This piece is called 'Comfort of Fog'

Red Hill/Black Hill



About this exhibition 'IN PLACE'

Weapons Listening and Waiting

Following the Sounds of Birds

These photos do not do justice to Dorothy's work, there is so much texture and minute detail which is hard to see unless you are in front of one of her pieces. It's as though she has honed her experience of place,  down to the bare bones, simplifying the images to reflect what she feels rather than sees. These are my words, not hers, but it is how I translate what I see in front of me.

I was also really intrigued by the work of a young mixed media textile artist called Bethany Walker. She has unusually combined concrete and textile/fiber materials, the results of which you can see above. Again, this photo doesn't do justice to her work, and the combination of industrial/domestic materials, fused together like this, gives unexpected results that I find very exciting. It will be interesting to see how Bethany progresses with this technique.

Back down to the nitty gritty, and above is a piece I'm working on at the moment, inspired by a photograph I took in Dungeness which included rusty mechanisms from a winch, tangled up ropes, fishing nets and rotting wood. As you can see, it was just the starting point, and my imagination has also been given free reign! I'll post a further photo when it's finished.

Finally my Journal quilt for October, again, using the same image that I used for September, but this time I wanted to experiment with a mono print for the outline which I made on some hand dyed fabric that had very washed out colours. I overlaid the piece with organza before outlining the printed area with free motion machine stitch, and finished it off with hand stitch.

It's been such an inspiring day, I've walked my feet off, seen some wonderful textiles, and spent far too much money! It will all have been worth it though if it gets my creative juices flowing again, something which has needed a bit of a boost these last few weeks.

Thanks for reading, and whatever you're creative exploits are, enjoy!