Saturday 23 May 2020

reCollecting - Sylvie Franquet at the Harley Gallery

Manmade - Boys will be Boys - Sylvie Franquet 
"When looking at the Nightwatch, I saw these men dressed upto the teens, and posturing, stirring each other up into aggression.  Then, in the midst of them, I spotted the woman trying to be heard."

Last year I saw an exhibition by Sylvie Franquet at the Harley Gallery, which is on the Welbeck Estate near Worksop.  Sylvie Franquet is a self taught, Belgian born artist who collects her materials on her rambles, at fleamarkets and on Ebay.  She subverts famous artworks by men that have been created in tapestry, usually by women, by unpicking and reworking them to include quotes that have inspired her.  In doing so she changes the focus from the male gaze to her own.  They become both playful and political.

Hornicopia - Sylvie Franquet
"These still lives are all about nostalgia.  Our connection with nature gives us an exuberance and a hope."

Nature Morte/Still (A)life - detail - Sylvie Franquet
"This large tapestry is a patchwork of landscapes. It explores the place of woman in landscape and in nature, and her connection with it."

Rebel With A Heart - Sylvie Franquet
"A tapestry inspired by Robin Hood.  A kind of sampler  insisting on the political, personal, and playful role one can and must play in this world."

Franquet has also been inspired by the Portland Collection which is also housed at the Harley.  The Portland Collection is comprised of the objects collected by the Dukes of Portland and their families.

God Was A Woman  - Sylvie Franquet

Sylvie Franquet's driftwood sculptures and dressed stone-mother-goddesses were influenced by Margaret, 2nd Duchess of Portland's, natural history and archaeology contributions to the collection.

Cormorant (Shag) - Sylvie Franquet
Her work is both thought provoking and humorous.

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