Wednesday 23 November 2022

Harrogate Knitting & Stitching Show 2022 - Textile Galleries - Part 1


Archana Pathak - In Lure of New Worlds

I went to the Knitting & Stitching Show in Harrogate recently.  It's my annual textile treat - a chance to be inspired by some wonderful textile artists, try your hand at a workshop or two if you like, pick up some advice and stock up on materials if you need any.  I love it!

Archana Pathak - Materials

This year I concentrated on the exhibitions in the Textile Galleries.  My favourite was Mapping Transience by Archana Pathak.  Archana grew up in India but now lives in London and her work explores the interplay of memory, place, identity and belonging.  She collects together postcards, letters, diaries and maps, deconstructs them and transforms them into something new.  I particularly liked her use of maps to form the threads she uses to handstitch her work. 

Archana Pathak - Transient Boundaries 

In her work in progress piece - Our World Our Making, Archana uses an old British colonial map to subtly show how allocated boundaries have been shifting in time..

Archana Pathak - Our World Our Making

James Fox in Cycling, Cloth & Conflict had some interesting and humorous work based on the bicycle and the changes it brought particularly for women. Fabulous machine stitching...

James Fox - Nothing To Lose

Aran Illingworth's Portrayal of Poverty was very moving, shining a spotlight on poverty, homelessness and displacement around the world.  Her work is richly handstitched.

Aran Illingworth - When We Were Very Young

Maggie Scott's Five Times More reflects on experiences of pregnancy, childbirth and motherhood and highlights that people of colour are at much higher risk in the British healthcare system during pregnancy and childbirth than their white counterparts...

Maggie Scott - One Hundred and Twenty-One

Maggie Scott - One Hundred and Twenty-One (detail)

Maggie uses digital printing, nuno felting and handstitch in her work.

Vivienne Beaumont - Mother & Daughter: The Message

Vivienne Beaumont's printed and machine stitched works of myths and stories were fascinating in her Seeds, Flowers & Flowing Hair exhibition.  Above, the myth of Demeter and Persephone examines the mother daughter relationship and the seasons.

Marcia Bennett-Male - Twenty Twenty Two

Marcia Bennett-Male may be better known in some circles for her stone carving and sculpting.  The Knitting & Stitching Show presented the first solo exhibition - Moments to Myself - of Marcia's textile works. Her vibrant handstitched appliques use chintz to represent England, where Marcia was brought up, and Dutch/African wax prints to represent her Afro-Caribbean background and address a wide spectrum of concerns relating to the depiction of Black women in history and myth to a more personal view on Black female mental health in our society.

So that's my quick taster of some of the exhibiting artists at the Harrogate Knitting & Stitching Show this year - more to come.  There are links to each artist if you want to find out more.  Hope you enjoyed it!

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