Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Artistically Based - Opens Today

Artistically Based – a textile exhibition by members of the Oxford Embroiderers’ Guild from Tuesday 20 October to Saturday 31 October 2009 at the Vale and Downland Museum, Church Street, Wantage OX12 8BL.

This is the latest exhibition by members of the Oxford Branch of the national Embroiderers' Guild. Started back in the 1980s the branch has a lively membership of around 55 people who meet on a monthly basis to hear speakers from the world of textiles, swop ideas and socialise.

They all have a common interest in fabrics, thread and mixed media art and whilst a few of them have studied textiles through colleges (some up to degree level) most like to stitch purely as a creative pastime. Many of them also take part in other creative subjects such as life drawing and members can often be found actively supporting creative ventures throughout Oxfordshire. Although not all of them are active stitchers, their interests and skills include machine embroidery and traditional hand stitching through to quilting, weaving, felt and paper making, dyeing, lacemaking and beadwork. Many of the members exhibit successfully in their own right as well as with the branch.

The branch also hosts a successful and active group of 'Young Embroiderers' aged between 7 and 14. The group meets regularly throughout the year when they spend their Saturday being introduced to creative ideas and producing innovative and colourful pieces. They will also be displaying their work as part of this exhibition.

The branch has exhibited in previous years at Said Business School, Abingdon Museum and at other venues around the county. This latest exhibition displays a broad range of work and 'Artistically Based' is not only the title, but also the theme. Other art forms such as painting, sculpture, books, or their own photographs have been freely interpreted into textile and stitch.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

14 October - AGM and Jo Dixon, "Working with mixed media"

We aren't talking ...
... said the laptop to the projector ... And that was that!!

Today we had our AGM and once Guild business was out of the way members were going to be treated to an illustrated talk by Jo Dixon, a local mixed media artist. Sadly the aforementioned paraphernalia of the 21st Century worked but were not communicating with each other so, and I take my hat off to Jo, she proceeded to tell us a little about herself, her artistic journey and where she was going, without them or any other visual aids. Trained in Textiles she took her inspiration from travels to a variety of countries, of which India seemed to have been the biggest inspiration that was still influencing her today. The zinging pinks, oranges, yellows and other bright colours had left a lasting impression, and we later saw that they were still present in her current work based on studies of allotments. Not may people are able to see heat in an English spring or summer setting and then translate this into vibrant images. Morocco was another source for shapes and colour, as it had been for Paul Klee.

"Valley Path" courtesy of Jo Dixon

We later were able to admire some of her work on a rather small scale on the laptop though this obviously could not do justice to the size of the original, the hot and vibrant colours and the texture. She had already mentioned that she uses a variety of different papers, brown packing paper and tissue paper being her favourites. She layers different papers with smaller shapes and muslin, painting and inking them, and sometimes adding stitches.

"Peacock" courtesy of Jo Dixon

One of Jo's favourite quotes is by Braque: "The most important thing about art is the thing you can't explain!" I was surprised that tonight I had been moved by her words, her descriptions ... the most important thing about art is the imagination!

by Ulrike Hutchins
who has just stepped down as the newsletter editor but now finds herself writing for the blog ;o)

Note: Click on the pictures for a larger view.


Our apologies to Jo and to the members for the technical difficulties last night, we hope that it did not spoil your enjoyment of the evening.

Jo will be running a mixed media day course at Sunningwell School of Arton Thursday, 3rd December. 10.00 - 4.00.
Booking Contact: 01865 730442

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Artistically Based

Textile exhibition
by members of the
Oxford Embroiderers Guild

Tuesday 20 October -
Saturday 31 October 2009

Vale and Downland Museum
Church Street
Wantage Oxfordshire

Monday-Saturday 10.00am - 4.00pm
Free admission

Come along and view the exhibition
and enjoy tea and cake
in the museum café