Tapestry 5 is a new group of emerging tapestry artists brought together in 2019 through a unique part-time weaving course in Edinburgh. ‘Studio Practice: Professional Development in Tapestry Weaving’ was devised and tutored by artist Fiona Hutchison in her Patriothall studio. This collaborative exhibition is its culmination.
From Scotland to Lahore, the artists draw on inspiration from their environment and express it through this dynamic range of new work. The result is a vibrant mix of form and style, from the detailed representational, to the sculptural and abstract. Drawing on their weaving experience and the traditions of narrative-based textiles, each artist pays homage to the emotional content of colour, the beauty of natural fibres and discarded materials.
The title references the connection between the creative process and its expression within a chosen environment. Ideas are generated by times spent in the studio; there is time to learn and collaborate; time to experiment with different techniques and alternative materials, and time to weave new objects. The studio is a source of inspiration, a place for initiating ideas; the gallry is a place to show completed works. Time and Place is the personal expression of both, and an opportunity for the public to view the ingenuity and talent of five weavers working in contemporary tapestry today.
Ayesha Barlas is drawn to the colour and patterns of the narrative based art forms of her Pakistani heritage. The resonance of the chimerical remnants of the past with her present experience is the focus of her work. This interplay also inspired the internationally acclaimed miniature tapestries of her 100-days project. Ayesha trained through a series of workshops with Fiona Hutchison and at Edinburgh’s Dovecot Studios and WASPS. She collaborated in the Cordis Physic Garden Tapestry, led by Jo McDonald – now on display at the Holyrood Palace Education Centre. Her work has been shortlisted for the Cordis Tapestry Showcase and she has written for the American Tapestry Alliance triannual publication.
Irene Campbell uses her own drawings and paintings of the natural landscape at her home in the Scottish Borders, to inform her weaving. Her greatest inspiration is the winter landscape with all its wood land and field margins delineated by the season. Abandoned materials and plant fibres are her treasure trove. Irene graduated from Edinburgh College of Art where she focused primarily on painting and textiles.
Sarah Hill focuses widely on texture and shape. Using the seashore as inspiration, her 3-D paper “sketches” transform into complex 3-dimensional woven pieces – shaped and manipulated into woven sculptures rather than images. Sarah studied Tapestry at Edinburgh College of Art and West Dean College in Sussex. She is the recipient of a Visual Arts and Craft Makers Award and continues her ongoing professional development with tuition by Fiona Hutchison and Jo McDonald. Her work has been selected for the Cordis Tapestry Showcase, and she has exhibited at Edinburgh’s Dundas Street Gallery. Other works are held in private collections throughout the UK.
David Ingrey‘s bold and colourful cityscapes and architectural nuances begin with photography, to collage, and finally to tapestries of geometric shapes and textures. The cities of peeling paint and chipped walls provide his colour palette. David began his career as a Letterpress printer and moved on to study Textile Design and Printmaking between 2007-2012. He has studied with Fiona Hutchison for the last three years. His work was chosen for the Cordis Tapestry Showcase in both 2017 and 2018. He completed the 100-days project and has exhibited his work at Edinburgh College of Art.
Pru Irvine‘s dark and delicately woven abstracts come from a passion for colour and its ability to convey emotion. Her work grows and develops on the loom. Working in small scale format poses a challenge to create powerful images without compromising either idea or technique. Pru began studying tapestry at Edinburgh College of Art and has gone on to complete a three-year Professional Development course with artist and weaver Fiona Hutchison. She has been selected for the Cordis Tapestry Showcase and has exhibited at a number of Hebridean venues. Her work was highlighted in the Weavers Bazaar online gallery, and a recent commission has gone into a private collection along with many other of her tapestries.