Tuesday, 12 May 2020


hi all and long time no see! A lot has happened since Christmas which was my last post mainly working towards an exhibition due to open in the Art Pavilion in Mile End yesterday but obviously due to circumstances we opened online. My first ever attempt at a group meet up online. It worked a treat just wish i had a glass of wine as was advised!

anyway to back track i was accepted into PRISM textiles last year which i feel was a great achievement. the exhibition title 'In search of (im) possibilities' was at first a bit daunting but gave a lot of scope. i had been reading a lot of fairy stories at the time and went after a fair amount of research down the rabbit hole of the Brothers Grimm and others with spinning gold from straw. i hadn't realised that fairy stories are categorised by their content, spinning gold into straw comes under ATU 500/501 'The name of the supernatural helper'. there are a number of versions, even two by the Brothers Grimm who revised and expanded their earlier 1812 version in 1857. the other story i worked with was 'The girl who could spin gold from clay and long straw' by Benjamin Thorpe 1853. this latter version is interesting as the girl was given a pair of gloves to spin with.
the idea of spinning gold from straw is obviously impossible, you cannot make gold, it was made billions of years ago and is therefore finite!
the more i delve into these stories the more i realise they are hugely sexist but thats another project.. 

i had been playing around with the idea of books and bookbinding techniques and so my proposal above was to use straws and straw instead of pages. the following images are just a brief insight of the ideas and finished artwork.
detail of finished 'Clutching at straws' using plain card straws, real straw straws,twisted straw, gold etc.
the two on the left have been 'bound' with stitch whilst the straw on the right is twined with gold wire. the wording on the central piece says 'please use the gloves provided when spinning gold'. the idea of wearing gloves now has a whole new meaning, something i am now exploring for future work.
i am a sucker for punishment! this tape is a 1.5cm wide tape and my tiny cross stitches were worked using a magnifying glass.
straw bends and splits very easily. my son now wants me to start making corn dollies!!!

so please do go along and see the 'virtual' exhibition and festival at www.prismtextiles.co.uk 
work will be appearing daily 


1 comment:

  1. Brilliant, looking forward to seeing the exhibition.