Sunday, 18 July 2010

The Crafter's Way 144 - Textile Exhibition

Here is this week's Messenger column,Textures, Textiles & Twigs, featuring an interview with Textile Artist, Fran Robinson.

This exhibition brings together the works of three artists. Artists from Caboolture, Pine Rivers and Redcliffe represent each district of the vast region of Moreton Bay. Jim Aitkenhead’s (I studied printmaking with Jim), “The Kermack Collection”, is a celebration of his long career in printmaking. Wendy Sonnenburg's exhibition, “More than a Basket” explores handmade baskets and other forms of containment whilst Fran Robinson’s “Gifts of the Forest” is an exhibition showcasing Fran’s unique approach to contemporary embroidery. I recently caught up with Fran to discuss the exhibition and her art.

Did you create the pieces especially for the exhibition or did they evolve over time? The pieces I selected for this exhibition evolved over quite some time. The work comes together far too slowly for me to be able to fit into anyone's deadline, not even my own.

Where do you get your inspiration? A lot of the inspiration comes from my local environment or places I have visited, some painting and drawing, as well as playing on the computer, mainly with photographs but also with actual scanned objects such as leaves.

How planned is each piece before you start or does it evolve? Most of the pieces are fairly well planned before I start, as far as the colour and lines of the design go. It is really difficult to change something once it's stitched on the canvas, so it's best to try to get it the way I want the first time. A good design helps keep me on track over the weeks or months of the stitching. The textures develop once I begin the actual stitchery, often enhanced by the use of beads and unusual textured yarns which I've been collecting over quite a long time. Developing 3D areas in some of the works can add a lot of excitement.

How long have you been doing this style of art? I took up canvas embroidery in about 1980 and very soon started creating my own designs and developing my own style.

How long does an average piece of art take to create? There's no set time for a design to come about. They happen as they do. As for the rest, it depends on the size of the piece, naturally, but I've found that the actual stitching time averages out at about 40 minutes to the square inch. The smallest pieces take about ten hours each and the bigger works can take hundreds of hours over several months to complete.

Wendy Sonnenburg will be sharing her basket weaving skills on Saturday July 24 at the Pine Rivers Art Gallery. For bookings contact the Gallery on 3480 6941.The Pine Rivers

1 comment:

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