I have been chosen as one of 27 artists to exhibit as part of the The 17th International mini textile exhibition in Bratislava and Prague. The theme was “Memory of Textile“.
“Textile is such a common part of life that its exceptional values are often overlooked. Its close contact to body gives it emotional power. And in addition to many other properties, it also has the ability to record stories from the past – personal, intimate, but also collective. The historical memory of textile, as well as the private one, tell of past values, skills, relationship to the world and shift the legacy of its content towards the future.”
The piece I submitted was ‘Lord Deliver Me’ as part of the submission process I explained how the piece fits within the theme “Memory of Textile”…
Rope was my starting point – it was integral to life within prisons, used to hang those sentenced to the death penalty, unpicking rope was a prison task and the unpicked rope would be used to caulk boats used for transportation to the colonies. Using this rope I have referenced the idea of spiralling out of control by making coiled rope bowls using basketry techniques. Clay pushed into the rope basket creates a bone like remnant, a memory, whilst also referencing the ideas of unravelling and deterioration.
Iron oxide was used to enhance the ropes texture on the outside of the item (Iron locks, prison keys) a tin glaze was used inside (tin bowls and cutlery were issued to each prisoner). The piece is also empty – empty lives. It doesn’t stand up and couldn’t hold anything – pointless and purposeless, lives that were not lived to the full.
The red thread inside the piece references the phrase ‘hanging by a thread’ as well as a significant reminder of the severing of an umbilical connection between a mother and her child.
Moments before Selina Wadge was hung she was heard to say ‘Lord deliver me from this miserable world’.”