'The Textile Tradition Then and Now'
American Museum, Bath. I
revisited the American Museum in Bath at the invitation of Deidre
McSharry to study the textiles with a view to making a piece of work
in response to the collection. However hard I tried to keep an open
mind, my attention and imagination was continually drawn back to the
patchwork quilts, particularly the worn faded quilts, that described
the amount care, love and time put into them and those that particularly
evoked memories of the past that seemed to be embodied in its very
I was curious to know about the documentation of the lives of women
who made the quilts. Memory is an inevitable outcome of the women's
patchwork, a theme fundamental to my own work. I would use my own
scraps of fabrics, letters diaries and drawings to make the dress.
This could describe and follow the journey of my life. I enjoying
collecting all the different pieces I needed for this purpose.
As I started to collage the surface of the dress the piece was telling
a story. I tore up maps, letters, tickets, envelopes. I cut up fabric,
old clothes and a pillowcase, at the outset arranging delicate childlike
colours and textures around the top at the breast, allowing the shapes
and the patterns to suggest themselves becoming darker towards the
base of the piece.