There are some wonderful examples of Jo’s work on her website - http://www.jmdecorativeart.co.uk/index.php. Jo, who is also a member of the Worshipful Company of Painters and Stainers, works primarily with pieces of antique lace. She alters the surface of these delicate fabrics with painting and gilding to produce unique decorative items. Some of these are framed, some are made into jewellery and others are used as patterning for interior design.
Jo spoke about the development of her practice, her training and her years in teaching and showed images of her diverse work. She is now extending her working practice to include surfaces such as glass, leather, plastics and wood veneer.
Jo presented a very comprehensive account of her practice; however I would have liked to have learned more about the very basics of the gilding process. I found the small fragments of lace coloured with metallic pigments very effective. The delicate sheen of colour complemented the elegance of the patterned lace in which you can still see every stitch and twist of thread. I found the negative prints created by the lace pieces on plain and coloured backgrounds particularly interesting. These retained a sense of the antique cloth in a very real sense due to the prints not always appearing complete or whole.
In the afternoon Jo led a workshop using metallic foils which we transferred to pieces of cloth using bondaweb and other adhesive films which acted as the glue, producing very effectively decorated samples.
As ever, Thames Valley Contemporary Textiles offered its audience a different perspective of textile practice much appreciated by its members and guests.
Jo Mabbutt – Metallics Workshop Materials List of Suppliers
Metallic Transfer Foil:
Available in packs and also off the roll from Applicraft www.applicraft.co.uk
Real Metal Leaf:
Transfer leaf (on wax paper) available in books of 25 sheets from:
o A S Handover www.handover.co.uk
o Wright’s of Lymm www.stonehouses.co.uk
o Gold Leaf Supplies www.goldleafsupplies.co.uk
Available in different weights, packs and rolls from:
o Spunart www.spunart.co.uk
o Other craft websites
Available in packs or on a roll from:
o Rainbow Silks www.rainbowsilks.co.uk
o Other craft websites
Fuse FX - gossamer fusible web:
Occasionally available in small packs from Art Van Go www.artvango.co.uk
is a decorative artist specialising in experimental surface decoration - particular use of gilding with other techniques. More information about Jo and her work can be seen here. Jo is a member of the Worshipful Company of Painter-Stainers.
Jo gave a most interesting talk in the morning and then took a workshop in the afternoon where we did some experimental guilding.
Several members brought work to the meeting for photographer Kate Simpson to take professional photographs of their work.
Report on January meeting:
In-house challenge sharing session
In September 2014 Carol Wilkes and Sandy Snowden introduced an in-house challenge for members; the theme was ‘Scale – Nature’. The idea was to think about nature in its broadest sense and also in relation to scale. This had encouraged much exploration and development of ideas. The purpose of the challenge is personal development only, but the work can of course become part of a series of work that may be used in a different context. Today the members were given an opportunity to show their work so far and share their thoughts behind it.
There was a great variety of approaches to exploring nature, from direct prints and marks made on cloth outside to looking at microscopic images of cell structure, of birds, the movement of the body, the changing seasons and many more. People worked in a variety of techniques, printing in many several different ways, dyeing, layering, applique, slashing, embroidery, trapping, crocheting and more!
Introduction of Exhibition Challenge 2016
The Thames Valley Contemporary Textiles Challenge for exhibition in 2016 was introduced to the members by Marion Robertson. The concept was developed by Jane Glennie before she stepped down as exhibition officer; this is her innovative idea for the next exhibition:
We would like you to make a piece of work inspired by a garment. This can be any item of clothing or shoes. You must submit a photograph of the specific garment. It may be a photograph of the garment before it is cut up to create your piece or may be a photograph that shows the garment e.g. a wedding dress, soldier’s uniform etc. However, whether it is old or new, currently existing or not, you must be able to link your piece to a specific garment. The piece can be 2-d or 3-d, use a variety of techniques and work in a variety of scales. The final twist is the hanging, all pieces will be displayed on coat hangers to give visual coherence to the exhibition. Small 3-d work will be on plinths, possibly incorporating mini hangers or other garment related items, such as shoe boxed.
In the afternoon, Kate Crossley ran a workshop called Acid Etching on Fabric; this is a technique she uses regularly in her own work. Kate demonstrated layering of different fibres to create a mixed fibre cloth, followed by the application of Devore paste; this was heated and dissolved some fibres. All members had the opportunity to make their own sample.
Happy New Year!
Happy New Year! Hope you are getting off to a good start. Did you get any art or sewing related presents? Or perhaps inspiration for work to make in the coming year?
As you know, our next meeting is the 17th of January. I am looking forward to seeing the work you have been doing for the In-House Challenge Scale: Nature. Even if it is a work in progress for you, do bring it along. This is about encouraging your journey, not judging the artwork or techniques.
In the afternoon, Kate Crossley will be doing a workshop involving Fabric Etching.
We will also be presenting the theme for making work for our Exhibition for 2016. As you know, we are hoping to put in a proposal to exhibit at the Spring Knitting And Stitching Show again. If you have ideas for other venues, please let our Exhibitions Officer - Marion Robertson know.
If you have other work you would like to display in the Gallery, do bring that along. And of course some money to spend at the 'Been There, Done That' table!
Do you have a friend who might enjoy the day, do bring them along.
Looking forward to seeing you,
We're looking forward to welcoming Janet Curley Cannon on 23rd November. I am very excited to participate in her workshop when she will be showing how to make 3D forms using her techniques with Paper Maché Clay.
On Saturday Merete and Sandy swiftly dispatched the AGM duties (and I'm sure a few efficient Danes would be a help in Westminster!) so we could get to the exciting and enjoyable part of the day with Mary Crabb.
Mary introduced us to her career from her childhood influences through to her discovery of traditional willow basketry and on to the contemporary and innovative work that she produces today.
Sadly for us we were unable to see some of her most recent pieces but this is because they are currently on show at Horsham Museum until December.
After lunch we began the practical workshop where we learnt the basics of the twining technique to create flat pieces or even 3-d vessels.
I was so busy during the workshop, and enjoyed myself so much that I forgot to take photographs during the session. If I get a moment I'll take a snap of my attempts and post them. Please send me any pics of creations made or developed from the session ... Thanks, Jane.
We were excited to hear about how Alysn transitioned from scientist to textile artist. Some of the knowledge from her degree has helped her in knowing and understanding the chemical changes in the techniques she uses for her work. Alysn also spoke about her design processes and how those work when she is designing items such as unique commissioned wedding gowns. Aspects of balancing gallery ownership with making and showing work in other places was also very fascinating.
We were very glad to learn we'd been able to have her come before she takes off for New Zealand! Although Alysn intends to spend a few months here, her popularity will probably mean she is fully booked during those times!
In the afternoon Alysn led her ‘Impressive Metals’ Workshop and the group joined in the scoring, painting and sewing of metal. The kits supplied were full of lovely bits and pieces. As well as having a go with embossing the metal, we experimented with using acrylic inks to colour the metal. Very interesting.
News and progress from the group
If you want to contribute to this blog, please email Jane and she will invite you to become a blog contributor.