Thursday September 23 2021



Village Art & Literature

Words to artistry

Posted on September 30 2018 at 12:32:30 0 comments


Bromsgrove artist Richard McIlwraith is thrilled by the talent of local embroiderers.

You simply must visit Artrix in October and see the staggering textile artistry on the art centre’s white walls in this touring exhibition by the Embroiderers’ Guild. Each of the 120+ pieces take a book as inspiration.

The display is named “Page 17” and may just leave you speechless.

Viewing the combination of painstaking work and rich imagination is an intense experience, heightened by the knowledge that the creators range from experts to gifted novices.

Curators Amanda Smith and Alex Messenger created this overwhelming display to raise the profile of textile and stitched art.

Traditional hand stitching and contemporary machine work intertwine and dance as you move through the exhibition.

Amanda and Alex asked me to stress that this is the final opportunity to experience the exhibition; following a remarkable year, the tour of the UK comes sadly to an end.

Words to artistry and back to words: A review in prose seems inadequate. Having spent the best half-hour of my week soaking in this exhibition, something deeper, more elemental, more creative is the only response that feels appropriate.

Here goes…

Jane Austen’s Persuasion,
Domesday Book of 1086,
Watership Down by Richard Adams,
Prehistoric rock art,
Sketchbooks, poetry, British flora –
Scores and scores of stimulating books – 

Explosions of imagination.
Enigmatic art in thread and cloth.

Canvas, collage, cotton,
Wrapped, padded, pleated,
Free machine, needlelace,
Layered linen, stitched satin,
Background gold, old felt,
Fleece, beads, bleached chiffon,
Ribbon, buttons, tea-dyed scrim,
Tissue shrunk, muslin, leather,
Thread and cloth, embellished, embossed.

Textured gesso, gauze,
Remnants, velvet, wax and silk,
Wire and foil, fabric stain.
Pause. Step back. Admire.

A library of toil; white walls filled.
Full, unchained applause.

Visit to find out more about the Guild and your nearest branch. The Artrix exhibition runs until Sunday November 4 at the following times: weekdays 9am to 2pm; Saturdays 10am to 2pm; and on performance evenings.

Don’t forget there is a café too! Artrix is located on Slideslow Drive, Bromsgrove, B60 1GN.

Please get in touch if you would like me to write about an art event near you: .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)

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