Much of your work focuses on the idea of creative practice as a form of emotional restoration for the maker - primarily the act of creation rather than the outcome of the work. What drew you to investigate this notion and why do you think textiles support this research so well?
As someone who has personally been in need of repair, I experienced first-hand how the very act of creating can formulate at least a partial form of well-being for the maker themselves. Not a permanent fix, yet artistic practices can soothe one’s soul and create a mind displacement activity for the artist. I have written critical papers on this subject matter so really believe in its worth. The feel of having something tactile to the touch adds another dimension, seeing something form, grow and being able to observe this in motion is wonderful.
You have said before how your work is “driven by a desire to carry on the familial narrative line, each item holds its secrets.” Given the deeply personal meaning behind each piece in your collection, how do you wrestle with the natural conflict that arises between private ‘secrets’ and public gaze when they are in exhibition?
To reveal or conceal and how to bring this into fruition is something I recommend learning early on in one’s career. Then you have the ability to decide what is obvious and said, visually speaking. I might choose to make a portrait for example, but I don’t need to tell you what is “behind the eyes” of the face observed. That can be left for audience interpretation. I am someone who naturally wears her heart on her sleeve, so I do divulge a lot though my work outcomes and especially my sketchbook work; these are my diaries, where I bear my soul. You will find out more about me in these books than in any bound tome.
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