Bridges 3

Helen told the group this exchange had felt like a journey. Helen felt her approach to the piece was similar to Mandy’s, there was some concern of doing the print justice and similarly to the photograph Pony it seemed inaccessible in some ways. Helen was inspired by the stitched pieces Mandy did but again felt they were self contained works. She responded most to the negative Mandy produced which presented all the printed marks as motifs, broken up by the white background.

Taking this negative image and using other found images including a favourite textile, Helen built up compositions on tracing paper, responding to the general theme of landscape and the winter environment (there was a great deal of snow). She had also worked on selected parts of the black and white image taking circles and dislocating them from the original composition.

Then on an unrelated research trip to a recycle centre (Grumpys) Helen came across the remnants of a tapestry kit. This struck a cord with her and inspired the final push on the Bridges piece. Helen was drawn to the foliage and landscape aspects of the kit design and felt more inspired by this object than by some of the other processes she has explored. Out of the background of the tapestry backing cloth, Helen has stitched motifs that are inspired by her drawing process and the mark making from the bridges print.

Bridges reinterpreted as abstract landscape in stitch.

She reflected on the journey that she had undergone with the piece concluding that she is drawn to found objects and (make do and mend) philosophy rather than drawing from observation. There is some reluctance left over from ‘Art School’ to give yourself permission to work in the way that you want rather than the way you have been told will be the best. The difficulty of having so many options and choices, making decisions and knowing what you want. Helen wants to explore print to expand her painter’s tool kit.

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