I became interested in the idea of cloth and clothing when my Dad passed away suddenly, when we left the hospital with a little bag of his clothing but not him, it opened my eyes to the power that clothing has. From being a huge sheet of fabric, to becoming a part of a person, of a time and place is something I am eager to explore.
It almost crosses over into the subject of memory, but I want to stay well away from that idea as I feel it is a subject that has been not necessarily exhausted but, it frequents many textile concepts. I’m more interest in a sense of history and the relationship our body has with cloth. From the way cloth is made, we labour over the warp and weft, essentially weaving a history within it.
Over the summer, I visited the V&A museum, particularly the Textiles room, where I was interested in the needlework samplers. Hundreds of years old, I was moved by the way the fabric was sodden with history, saturated with touch. It had been passed through someone’s hands over and over as they laboured over the embroidery. It was this that has made me want to explore that heavy, lingering sense of touch within cloth. There is a personal narrative with my concept that I think will always be there, which is about my Dad passing. It was so sudden that I think it’ll always be somewhere within my work, as I look at his dressing gown which harbours a musty slept-in smell, and crumbs from bacon and egg sandwiches!
I just want to explore our relationship with cloth; the one that most people, on a day to day basis, ignore. We aren’t really aware of how important cloth is to our culture. I am currently looking at the way skin and cloth combine, as skin becomes woven into the cloth, the warp and weft carrying our DNA, us and with that, our past.