Thoughts on the impact of solid words gathered by Lancashire textile artist Catherine Hill.
Threads Of Survival were thrilled to receive an email from someone who had seen our work on Instagram and wanted to know if there was any way we could include her work.
We’re proud of the fact that our project has been focused on anyone and everyone coming on board and having a go – no matter what background or skills/experience. But we have to acknowledge that we’ve been blessed with textile and visual artists who have joined us and been incredibly generous with their time and their creative ideas.
It’s been a real support knowing that our grassroots community approach is recognised as valuable by professional artists.
Collecting words and phrases of the Covid era has been an element of our quilts – Bad Alphabet created by other NW artists Gabrielle Lorenz and Sylvan Davies in particular focuses on the new and often used phrases of the pandemic. Catherine Hill, a Lancashire textile artist, chose to capture the mental state of so many of us dealing with the repetitive routine and circular patterns of the LockDown year 2020/21.
Catherine’s work has been shown in galleries and exhibitions recently and we discussed the decision to put her textile pieces behind glass and inside frames. We’ve had our own discovery with one of our patches (see image below) and Catherine agreed that placing textiles in a frame and behind glass gives the work a different presence to the viewer.
It recognises what the textile piece is – ART.
The piece below, The Covid Disappeared, has remained in a frame since early November 2021. We framed it mainly to keep it safe but it has had an impact on visitors as an individual patch with a very big emotional story.
We now refer to all our quilts as works of art and we want all our makers to recognise their achievement. Obviously we can’t frame everything. And there is something to be said to be able to stand in front of a physical textile piece with no glass separation.
Catherine’s Covid19 – Part One joins us for the winter tour into 2023 and we are delighted that she has asked to join the collection. This is what she has to say about her piece.
Some people write memoirs or biographies – I make hand-stitched embroideries. Originally my art was created for my children as a medium to share my own childhood memories and has since evolved and expanded to collect and record aspects of my own daily life – this included life during the first UK lockdown which I felt needed documenting in some way.
The piece is about our shared experiences in March 2020. It was designed in late summer and stitched just before the November 2020 lockdown. As I was stitching it, I found myself doubting that some of these things had actually occurred – no planes in the sky and the loud sound of birdsong. We all lived through a joint experience in March that we’ll remember for years to come.
I’m honoured to have this piece included in Threads of Survival.
I’ve been invited to publish work in several publications; most recently in Embroidering the Everyday: Found Stitch Paint by Cas Holmes. My work has been exhibited globally including UK, New York, Germany, Switzerland and Australia.