Saturday, 25 April 2015

Daphne's Smile: Mandy Pattullo

The box of old diaries uncovered in a flea market by Mandy Pattullo earlier this year, had another gem to offer - this black & white photograph.   

"At last I can reveal MY Daphne. I know the name of the diary writer to be Daphne and the photograph had just Daphne written in pencil on the back so I think it is a fair deduction that she is the diary writer. Doesn't she just look like the sort of girl who would always wear gloves!"

Thursday, 23 April 2015

Work in Progress: Sarah Burford

Sarah Burford's pouting 'Daphne' has gained the most marvellous headgear which, if you look closely, you can see has been made from the fingers of her project glove. Further pieces of glove have become the ruched sleeves of her costume.

Wednesday, 22 April 2015

Work in Progress: Mandy Pattullo

"I have been marbling some paper for the end papers of my book. The Fabriano took the marbling ink well though I am a little dissatisfied with the colour which is not quite turkey red enough for me! In my studio I have stuck fabric on the end boards and when it is dry I will be able to start to assemble my story of Daphne's Glove."

Tuesday, 21 April 2015

An Extra Feature for 2015

The inaugural exhibition of Daphne's Glove which take's place this Autumn (29th September - 11th October), will be accompanied by a series of creative workshops with some of this year's project artists.
This is a chance to connect with the artists directly by learning about some of the techniques they use in their work and an opportunity to try them out for yourself.
The workshops will take place at the Weavers Gallery in Ledbury, Herefordshire, where the exhibition is being held. Further information about the workshops available and how to book a place can be found HERE. or by clicking on the image in the panel on the left.

Please note places are limited. Booking opens today.

Monday, 20 April 2015

Daphne & Patricia: Ali Ferguson

Ali Ferguson's response to the Daphne's Glove challenge is almost complete, so here are the stories behind the second and third characters in her glove trilogy, the first being Simmie who you can read about HERE.  

"Once I had begun work on Simmie's story Daphne's Glove and story started to emerge. I decided that she could keep her story hidden. I know she is a strong character with something from her past that she chooses not to share. The day after deciding this I came across this envelope hidden amongst my old letters - marked simply "Last from B". A short and slightly intimidating letter stating, amongst other things, "you admit misconduct more than a dozen times" and "I want my freedom as much as you". Also in the envelope is a solicitor's document dated 1958 titled, "Your Nullity Suit". 
Oh Daphne how I admire your courage to ignore the gossip and go your own way."

Above, Daphne's glove with the layers of her story ready to be cut from the calico and placed into her drawer.

The beginning of Patricia's glove

"Patricia's Glove, pictured above in progress. Patricia is my mother-in-law and has provided me with several pairs of nylon gloves throughout the project. She kept just producing one pair at a time from her dressing table - hence my reason for using drawers to display the final glove pieces!
I aim to have the final drawer finished by the end of this week"

Thursday, 16 April 2015

The Presence of Daphne's Absence: Claire A Baker

For all of the artists involved in this project their creativity is a driving passion, how they earn their daily crust and present in all aspects of their life. As a result this often means keeping a lot of 'plates spinning' at the same time.  Claire A Baker is no exception to this; textile & surface designer, maker & lecturer who last Autumn also began an MA at Manchester Metropolitan University. A busy person indeed.

Here Claire talks us through her response to the glove brief and the presence of an absent Daphne.

"I have found it incredibly difficult to try and fit this project in but I have been determined since the beginning to create something aesthetically pleasing at the very least. However, it has, I admit, been much more difficult than I thought. And now it comes to producing the final piece my intentions are faltering again. technically, I keep disappointing myself.
My thoughts and ideas have only slowly taken shape and evolved. I wanted to 'suggest' the absent wearer (Daphne), a trace of her if you will, hopefully to provoke a sentiment, a connection, questions...
For my MA I have been researching memory; items left behind that suggest past lives, then conversely objects that could/would be evocative but are no longer there (physically) and trying to work out how to invent this using fabric and thread.
After much experimentation into technique albeit based on a different visual, I thought I had an excellent plan for Daphne's glove. The reality is though that great ideas rarely look so great when immediately put into practice. So I struggle on...
Claire's original glove in positive & negative form
"I am working on a fabric piece, eventually using a somewhat darker palette than I started with, suggesting/indicating that Daphne has passed, though her femininity and (futile?) attempts at 'ladylike-ness' remain.
Using screen printing techniques and a photographic negative image of the (opened) glove I have 'removed' the image from the fabric only leaving an imprint of it, as Daphne did on life."
"The florals were printed using a stencil inspired by a pattern on a piece of torn wallpaper I photographed in an abandoned derelict house discovered in Cork, earlier this year - a room forgotten. I originally wanted the piece to be faded, imperceptible, almost not there but growing with vibrancy, detail and colour towards the 'end', that time when you no longer care about what other people think or how they see you. Caution to the wind and all that."
"However using the dark background means the discharged elements stand out starker than I first wanted."
The orginal colour palette was quite pale
 "I could overdye the whole thing but I would prefer the glove to stay white so I may dip dye the lower part of the design to knock it back a little, although I really like the contrast. We shall see after I have slept on it. Then I MUST start stitching! I sampled the domestic digital machine as it is all I will have access to for a while but I do intend to also hand embroider...quickly!"
Machine embroidered sample

You can see the full version of Claire's post on her blog HERE

Wednesday, 15 April 2015

Work in Progress: Karen Shapley

Sometimes the seemingly commonplace provides a seam of unexpected inspiration.
Whilst on a regular walk through the woods with her dog Lola earlier this year, Karen Shapley came across an abandoned and weathered glove in her path...  
The 'found' aspect of Karen's project piece has taken many forms and on finding the glove, an idea took root and began to grow into a story. This story, which includes her ceramic rabbit, forms the backdrop to Karen's 'Daphne'.
"The glove was just lying in the woods and since then I have seen an awful lot of odd gloves caught on trees & lying under bushes. It got me thinking, if Daphne's glove were lost who would find it?

A story has emerged for me on two levels; the purely imaginative harking back to snippets of memories of stories from childhood, and on another level from the fabrics and cloth, the idea of  recycling & making things look beautiful, reusing."
Rabbit's skirt has been made from found or vintage fabrics

"The Rabbit is supposed to be on the scruffy side of things, her role being one of a forager. She dashes through the woodland collecting scraps. I have found it surprising difficult not to neaten and finish her edges." 

A glimpse of Rabbit's wheels

Seen here basking in the sun, Rabbit now has her skirt and a set of red wheels for scooting through the woods when foraging.

Friday, 10 April 2015

Work in Progress: Mandy Pattullo

It's fair to say that the nylon content present in many of the project gloves has been an issue for most of us, being a fabric none of us seem particularly drawn to in our other work. Possibly as a result of not being able to change the fabric of the glove, Mandy Pattullo found herself getting subversive in other ways...

"I have made all the pages of the book that bring me and Daphne together. I have sewn the real glove on to the very first page and it brings together the back of the name tape and the diary entry for Daphne's 21st birthday. I have deliberately turned the cash label over as my Daphne is different but I know the project specified we had to use it in some way. I am a little dissatisfied as I just don't like the glove much and its nylonish but love the shadows of it in the blind embossing on the other pages."

Monday, 6 April 2015

'Simmie's Glove': Ali Ferguson

Brown paper templates

Hitting a creative wall is common for many artists. When this happened to Ali Ferguson with her glove piece she initially appealed to the general public for help asking for their personal memories around glove wearing (as mentioned in a previous post here) but what also helped was a change in her choice of fabrics. By experimenting with a different material, brown paper, the fog began to clear. Watch now as not one, but three, stories unfold from her fingertips...

"I knew from the beginning that I would be telling more than one 'Glove Story' so I started gathering. This presented a huge challenge because I found a couple of wonderful 'real' stories and from then on anything that I came up with for Daphne just felt really contrived. Also my two other stories involved beautiful kid leather gloves and Daphne's was nylon - made in Hong Kong. This had me quite stumped for a while until I decided to stop thinking and just start making!
My lightbulb moment came after I had taken apart my small collection of gloves and made patterns from them on brown paper. I loved the lines and the shapes especially when they were laid out flat on my table. As soon as I made the decision not to use the gloves themselves but to use them as templates things started to click into place.
I decided to go with three glove shapes (seen below), three stories and they would be presented in three wooden drawers."
Here's story number one, 'Simmie's Glove'.
This story came to me through a Facebook appeal for stories. A tale of the respondent's grandmother who had escaped from a fire on board a ship. Her hands were prevented from burning on the metal ladder as she fled into the lifeboat by her long kid evening gloves. Her hands were unharmed but the palms of her gloves with singed with the heat. Copies of the newspaper article reporting the event, a letter in Simmie's own handwriting and the story in the words and handwriting of her granddaughter arrived through the post and I was able to begin work.

"The glove is cut from tissuetex paper coloured with walnut ink. I printed different pieces of text onto tissuetex and layered these onto it."
This was applied to calico and I started stitching some of the handwritten text. I then cut the glove from the calico and began the process of applying it into my drawer."  
"It's been such an exciting day today - my first glove has now been stitched into the base of it's drawer. The first story is taking shape!"


Saturday, 4 April 2015

Work in Progress: Karen Shapley

The overskirt to be worn by Karen Shapley's rabbit is taking shape. If you look closely you will see patches of rich, toffee brown fabric which, as part of Karen's process, have been dyed and chopped from her project glove. You now get a sense of where those found fabric scraps will fit into the final piece of work and your first glimpse of a top layer of decorative stitch.

"Her skirt is coming on and at some point I have to understand that it is finished and move on the the next piece!
I do have a thing for aged fabric, so I don't mind their marks and stains and darnings. When I was at university I dyed some new linen tea towels. I discharge printed them, dyed and discharged them again before adding a potassium dye, finishing with another discharge. I got really excited by the faded worn look. However, another student took one look and told me they reminded her of old dishcloths and she found them horrendous! This just goes to show everyone has differing tastes and visions and what will appeal to some about my work will completely turn off others." 

Friday, 3 April 2015

Work in Progress: Kathleen Murphy

"Since the beginning of this year's project my thoughts have never been very far away from Daphne's Glove - until now, thoughts largely taken up with the adminstration of the project rather than how I'm going to respond to the project brief!
Watching ideas unfold and writing about the progress which the other project artists have been making has been fascinating but curiously debilitating at times too as you can begin to question your own creative choices for being too similar or not similar enough. Feelings which several of us have confessed to. This is only natural in such a collaboration and hopefully an aspect of taking part which will push rather than stymie our thinking.
The desire to characterise Daphne has been strongly felt with many of us 'looking' for her. This week I found that 'her' name was blocking me from moving forward. Odd in a way because telling a story is often an integral part of my work and a name holds so much promise.  However, in a small act of subversion, I decided to chop the name up instead. The anagrams I made from the chopped letters were mostly nonsense (Den Loves Spagh) but it certainly lightened my mood and made me realise that my interest continues to lie in the glove rather than the name. So, move over Daph' you're blocking my view of that glove..."
A far more exotic name don't you think?

Wednesday, 1 April 2015

An Exhibition

This Autumn you will have the opportunity to see the finished results of the project in person as the pieces go on display at The Weavers Gallery in Ledbury, Herefordshire. The gallery is situated on a charming cobbled lane close to an area of Ledbury where the local tannery was once situated, and where there were tanners, glove makers were usually never very far away!

As well as the Daphne's Glove pieces the exhibition will be accompanied by a selection of additional work by all of the artists involved in this year's project. It promises to be a real visual treat!

Map of Ledbury HERE