Saturday, 10 October 2009

Michael Brennand Wood now owns a piece of my work...great validation!
http://brennand-wood.com/index.html

Monday, 5 October 2009

Alexandra Palace

Off in the morning...can't do any more sewing...the catalogues have arrived...felt prints are framed...browser freshly painted...the car is mostly packed. If I've forgotten anything, they do have shops in London!
Wish me luck...

Sunday, 27 September 2009

Workshop Wednesdays - Practical Textile Group

I'm putting my 20 years of lecturing experience to good use. I've developed a new series of workshops:Workshop Wednesdays helps you expand and progress your textile skills.
Autumn Term 2009 explores structure, stitch and composition, with exciting drawing techniques for textile enthusiasts.
14th October,11th November and 9th December 10am - 3 pm

Kath enjoyed it!

Friday, 25 September 2009

New images

I may be sewing madly to get ready for the Knitting and Stitching shows - only 10 days to go...! But I've found time to have some new/better quality images taken of my work. The detail is amazing and I zoom right in so you can see the warp and weft of the cloth. Just love them: thanks goes to Micheal Barrett


Wednesday, 16 September 2009

Steam Roller Printing

OK so it was more of a challenge than I had expected. It's hard work on your hands and knees inking up a 8 x 4 ft collographic printing plate - a task not always encouraged by the workmen in the plant hire yard.
Nevertheless, with the help of CarolAnn and Pippah [work placement students], we produced a large, subtle print onto fabric. There are a few photos here, but more on the Facebook fan page. Take a look...




The piece will be 'work in progress' during HOST the open studio trail. Radiant Works is open to the public 19/20 September, 11am - 5pm come along and take a closer look!

Wednesday, 9 September 2009

My story so far! - Magazine article

I think my interest in textiles must have skipped a generation: Mum isn’t into fabrics, but both my Grans were avid knitters. Gran Millar made exquisite smocked dresses in phenomenal detail and Gran Inglis would knit for the neighbourhood. So ferociously did she knit, that the ends of her knitting needles would create bald patches in her clothes where they nestled under her arms!
I studied at Goldsmith’s College, London. Audery Walker was running the course at the time & I was fortunate enough to have tutors like Micheal Brennah-Wood, Alice Kettle, Sally Freshwater. At 18 years old, I didn’t really appreciate just how lucky I was. We were given workshops in stitch, print, weave – plenty of techniques with incredible designers and textile artists. But no projects. No briefs. I remember Micheal’s introduction: ‘...find a desk, a chair, a space and get on with it...’ With what I thought, well you had to work that one out for yourself. Eventually I did and I now realise just how valuable that time was in helping me to apply myself and be self directed.
During the last year of my degree, I bumped into an old tutor from my Foundation Art and Design course, cheekily asked for a job & to my amazement the reply was positive! I started to run workshops during university holidays and then more regular lecturing once I’d graduated. Passing on skills and exchanging experiences with students can be incredibly inspiring and that connection with an educational institution always offers an insight into the latest ideas and technologies plus providing a platform for creative discussion.
About 15 years ago, I became particularly fascinated with the burn out process of devoré. I’d worked with felt, paper, stitch but with devoré on velvet everything seemed to just make sense and I was amazed at the attention my work received. As my children arrived so did my success! In 1996 I was selected for Chelsea Craft Fair, London [Organised by the Crafts Council] and in 2001 I represented Great Britain at Australian Fashion Week in Sydney. It was a busy time and tricky to juggle family life/creative work. I created unique accessories in hand painted devoré velvet – scarves, cushions, books and pictures. It was the wall pieces that gave the greatest satisfaction, they allowed me freedom to express the qualities of the landscape around me. I now offer specialist workshops, supplies and a ‘Demystifying Devore’ DVD to share my devoré developments further afield. Further details are available on my website: www.dionneswift.co.uk
We live in Yorkshire in the north of England. The moors are vast and windswept and I used dye in painterly brush marks to capture the structure of the land and the energy of the weather.
Four years ago I co-founded Radiant Works; visual arts resource and group studio with colleague Martin Smith. From there I run a varied selection of inspirational workshops, based near the centre of Huddersfield it’s easily accessible and ideal for small groups to develop new skills in drawing, printmaking, stitch, devoré and dying. Full details are available on my website: www.dionneswift.co.uk

A recent Arts Council England grant has allowed me to redevelop my work: It gave me time and space to play again, to explore and experiment. I’m thrilled with the outcomes – not just the physical pieces, but the journey has meant I’m creatively in a better situation.
The title; ‘New Grounds’ has resonances with traditional print making and also with the fact that I am treading new ground with my ideas and surfaces. It’s fantastic – I’ve given myself freedom to move and expand.
This new body of work can be seen at the Knitting and Stitching shows:
Alexandra Palace, London, UK 8th - 11th October;
Dublin, Ireland 29th October – 1st November;
Harrogate, UK 19th – 22nd November.
And then
Bankfield Museum and Gallery, Halifax, UK 16th January - 5th March 2010
Ropewalk Gallery, Barton on Humber, UK 27th March – 23rd May 2010
Myles Meeham Gallery, Darlington, UK 1st August – 18th September 2010

Wednesday, 12 August 2009

Bernard Leach's Pottery


The atmosphere and character of this pottery are so enticing. I could have happily stayed all day, yet at this stage I was just a little giddy from all that I'd seen - guess I don't get out enough!
video

Barbara Hepworth Sculpture Garden & Studio




During my recent holiday to Cornwall, my friend and I stole a day away from the rest of the crowd and headed to St Ives for a day of artistic indulgence. I hope the images speak for themselves. I refered to Barbara Hepworth, throughout my masters qualification, so always love to see her work.
For me seeing another professional studio scenario was especially rewarding

Friday, 24 July 2009

Revamped website

I've spent the day re working my site - adding courses & workshops. It's good to have that structure of dates in place.. It frees up my mind space to allow me to create.

Wednesday, 22 July 2009

Ready!

Well fingers crossed - I've set up the basic look of the blog - now I just have to write something...
Images speak loader than words!
This piece is 'FGS 8' - a collagraphic print on industrial felt. It's part of the 'Felt Ground Series' that play with repetition and the human hiccups within 'systems'. Hard as we all try we don't naturally create mechanically correct lines - human error offers uniqueness and beauty.

Getting started

So this is my second attempt at blogging - my first was hidden away & to be honest I didn't use it enough....here's to a fresh start...
I have a few big shows coming up in the autumn & I'd like to use this platform to talk though my process of creating the work for exhibition.
My thoughts will be image heavy, but I guess that's what most of us like.

So I'll get the look right & let you know what I'm up to.
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