Tuesday 26 September 2017

Luminary - Serena Partridge & Gawthorpe Hall

Nelson's Column & Big Ben by Serena Partridge

Luminary by Serena Partridge is currently being exhibited at Gawthorpe Hall.  This year, it is 50 years since Rachel Kay-Shuttleworth died.  She set up the Gawthorpe Textiles Collection based at Gawthorpe Hall in Lancashire.  (This is my second trip to Gawthorpe Hall - you can read about the first here.)  Luminary is a series of installations inspired by Rachel & her textile collection.  Working with local schools and adult groups across Lancashire & Yorkshire, Serena Partridge has created pieces which relate to Rachel's life & her ethos of keeping traditional craft skills alive. 

Notre-Dame D'Afrique, Algeria by Serena Partridge

Serena creates beautifully stitched artworks inspired by historical textiles and storytelling.  You may have read about Serena on my blog before.  You can find it here.

Bruges Belfry, Belgium By Serena Partridge

"Set" in the Dining Room reflects Rachel's extensive travels on which she collected many of her embroidery and textile pieces. Serena worked with local school children who sketched famous landmarks which she translated faithfully into embroideries.  Her use of glow in the dark thread is a reference to a spiritual experience Rachel had of a great luminosity which convinced her to set up her house (Gawthorpe Hall) as a centre for craft learning.

Eiffel Tower, France by Myles & Serena Partridge

Nuremberg Castle, Germany by Abredha & Serena Partridge

Windmills, Holland - Serena Partridge

In the Long Gallery, "Guide"  takes inspiration from Rachel's long involvement with the Girl Guides and the communal sampler made by Guides to her design.  School children created drawings relating to this or their own experiences of camping and outdoor activity.  These were mixed together and translated into embroidered pennants by adult groups.

Girl Guide Communal Sampler Designed by Rachel Kay-Shuttleworth
Here are some of the pennants...

The pennants were mounted on 7 different poles...

"Care" in the Huntroyd Bedroom reflects Rachel's role as caretaker both of the Hall and her textile collection.  Working together, Serena & Angela Chalmers have produced a series of cyanotypes (a type of cameraless photography) on felt of antique lace and whitework - as if documenting parts of the textile collection.  

Care - Serena Partridge & Angela Chalmers
Care - Serena Partridge & Angela Chalmers

The textile collection itself is very interesting and worth exploring.  I also like the display of Rachel's desk and her green ink labels for everything.

Rachel Kay-Shuttleworth's Desk

One of Rachel Kay-Shuttleworth's labels in characteristic green ink

Whilst I was visiting, I spotted a Threadifitti installation in the grounds.  This textile grafitti piece was made by UCLan's Fashion Design Department, postgraduate students from the MA Textiles and the Ground Up community group.  It uses thread, rope, crochet and embroidery.  There are other pieces in the grounds.  Threadifitti in on display until the end of September.

Threadifitti Installation

Threadifitti & Luminary are both part of Fabrications - a celebration of textiles through the eyes of artists in Pennine Lancashire in September 2017 presented by Super Slow Way.

Luminary is on at Gawthorpe Hall until 5 November 2017.  Why not go and take a look?  There's a cafe & car park in the grounds.

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