Textile Study Group

artists and tutors sharing ideas imagination and skills

Gwen Hedley

Artist statement

Coastal, and woodland walks sharpen my senses and enable me to see and think with greater clarity, as well as providing me rich pickings of widely ranging materials – stone, shell, metal, papers, organic matter etc. The common quality is that they have all been transformed by time and elemental forces, into new forms of beauty that never fail to engage me.

Grayson Perry so succinctly extols the virtue of organic change, when referring to the allure of the naturally altered surfaces upon ancient artefacts……."their beauty not diminished, but enhanced by 1400 years" and declaring that "the unknown craftsman I most love is age".

The fundamental marks and scars upon my 'finds' and the actual breakdown in structures still excite me, and I find great pleasure in discovering the hitherto imperceptible details and qualities that are revealed through magnification and closer examination. Subsequent drawing, isolating areas of interest develops a greater knowledge and awareness of the qualities in reference material, opening up fruitful pathways to design and stitch.

Currently, I tend to draw and print on both paper and fabric and combine them with stitch to unify the materials and enhance the design. My colour palette has become more limited, and tends toward monochromatic work, exploring tonal change and contrast.

Aspects of restoration and repair often feature in my work – anything showing signs of wear and tear, usually with an unknown history, just calls out to me and begs attention!

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