Ready for Hampshire open studios? I can’t believe I’m doing my first one. The open studio experience began for me in 1995, when I worked with the Hackney Contemporaries, organising The Hidden Art of Hackney. You may know one of the artists from the TV series The Great Pottery Throw Down, Kate Malone. I was inspired back then and so pleased I found stitch again in the noughties.
In this blog I’ve included some of my work being shown in the exhibition. A lot of my work is influenced by my Asian roots, the influence of Hinduism and the vibrant colours of Gujarat. It’s been fun creating this work and liberating my late mother’s saris to make beautiful things. All the fabrics I use are vintage or sourced via recycling. I think she would be proud.
We are exhibiting in Petersfield under the name The Art Group Collective, a group of six artists. See theartgroupcollective.com
Looking forward to it and hope you can come, we are venue 144
Physic garden, Petersfield High Street, GU32 3JJ | 24-29 Aug | 10am – 5pm | Free admission
The work is in for the People of the Heath exhibition, at the Flora Twort Gallery in Petersfield from 7-19 Sep. Three pieces submitted which represent my take on the bronze age digs.
My inspiration was drawn from the history uncovered there. I wanted to depict the impact we leave on our earth, even from so long ago, and how it is still evident in the burial mounds, showing to this day as Tumuli.
The photos show the burial barrows and you can see the different coloured sands. I’ve tried to interpret those colours in the dyed fabrics.
In my pieces these mounds are coloured in pinks and lilacs, reflecting the native heathers from that time. The lines show the contours of the land and the background portrays the sand layers found in the barrows.
The people of the heath were resourceful; recycling what they could as they farmed and hunted. Similarly, I’ve reflected reused materials in my work.
The contours are in kantha stitch from Gujarat (my ancestral home) where the women use it to make blankets from layering old sarees. The fabric is an old piece of silk, Shibori dyed as they did in ancient Japan to extend the lives of their old clothes.
There is inspiration all around us and signs to keep at it! This was the word on the street today
I loved making this, it evolved, as do a lot of my creations! It makes me feel happy and its vibrant.
To look at you can’t see the layers of fabric underneath, there is even some bright pink fabric in here. I like bullion stitch which is in the centre of the flower, and this is where I first began to use it.
It’s the cornflower colours and the need for sun which dictated my colour choice.
The threads are Eco-dyed and the multi colours look delicious in this! The ribbons are the hanger tags you get in ladies clothing, I cut them out and reuse them.
I’ve been asked to make more of these so I’m going to get started on on one in pinks, cerise and heather pinks, all because I have more dyed threads in that colour. Also I think it will look vivid, bright.
Slash and embroidery piece. Made for my sisters’ 40th birthdays using pieces of my mum’s sarees. I wanted my sisters to have something memorable which was hard to cut into two. Each piece was seen together for the last time on their birthday. Super fun to make these as you never know how it will look and you use up scraps and sentimental pieces.
I made this from wool sourced from my 99p store! Perfect colours for a five year old and if you look closely, it has specks of glitter!
It it took longer than expected but something that I could work on while watching TV, sitting on the beach, or while on holiday. I love crochet it’s a very meditative process. I fall into a trance while doing crochet and it keeps me calm and away from pondering on negative thoughts and worries. So take it up people.
Technical aspects, I used a 4mm crochet hook, double knit wool, and joined each square using double crochet.
There’s nothing more fun than making a collage with scraps. When the scraps have an emotional attachment then the final piece will always be a good piece of work.
This piece was made using pieces of my late mum’s sarees and there is even a piece of my parent’s first house curtains in this – from the 60’s.
I used bullion stitch in this which I love, creates a lot of texture. I also made fabric beads and embroidered over them. The flowers were not intentional they just happened – happens quite a lot with my work. If you look closely you can see a lady in a saree, she could be by mum! I like that representation in the piece as my mum was a great seamstress and award winning artist.