In 2019 I am starting a new project called Opening Stitches. In this project I ask people to provide a square of cloth with one or two sets of ‘opening stitches’ on it. I will then take the cloth and continue stitching in response to the stitches provided to me.
I plan to combine the collected pieces into one or more works that may be exhibited in future. All participants will be credited for their work (unless you wish to have your name withheld).
You can follow my progress on Instagram @leonieandrewsart
If you are interested in participating please contact me for mailing details.
Guildelines for joining the project
The start of two trial pieces in this series.
One of my trial pieces at 24 January 2019
Detail of my trial piece, 2019. Opening stitches provided by Alexis Yeadon and Susan Weisser.
I have been exploring some colour options for works to be included in my solo exhibition scheduled for September this year. Most of the work has been in subdued colours, but this piece calls for a bolder approach.
To those of you living on the east coast of Australia, there are two opportunities to see my work during December and January.
Firstly I am exhibiting my textile work at the Gosford Regional Gallery, along with two artists from my home town of Newcastle (NSW) Eleanor Jane Robinson and Mandy Robinson. If you can make it to the opening on Friday 4 December at 6.00pm I may see you there.
4 December 2015 – 13 January 2016
Leonie Andrews, Eleanor Jane Robinson
and Mandy Robinson
GOSFORD REGIONAL GALLERY, FOYER
36 Webb St, East Gosford NSW
Otherwise you can see one of my textile works that was selected into the Gold Coast Art Prize. The opening is on 5 December also at 6.00pm, but sadly I won’t be able to make the event.
Gold Coast Art Prize
5 December 2015 – 31 January 2016
THE ARTS CENTRE GOLD COAST
135 Bundall Road, Surfers Paradise
I’ve known about it since this time last year, but to hold the real thing in my hand is something else completely. Yep, there’s now an article in the current issue of Craft Arts International about my work! The current issue being No 94, pps 105-107.
A quick peek at the article
The article is written by Peter Haynes, a Canberra-based curator who I worked with in 2013. It focuses largely on work that was in my 2014 solo exhibition and also includes other works that have appeared in group shows over the last few years.
I hope you enjoy seeing the ‘other side’ of my work!
The most recent design exercise set for the textile group I belong to was on the theme of ‘Nothing’. It was an interesting concept to try to express. I had recently re-watched the documentary ‘Herb and Dorothy’ about the American collectors of minimalist and conceptual art Herb and Dorothy Vogel. A favourite scene in the documentary is where a visitor attempts to get to grips with a piece that consists of a short length of rope, nailed to the wall (apologies I can’t recall the name of the artist).
So I thought I would also work with a small piece of unravelled rope that I had, clearly in the scheme of things this could be considered ‘nothing’. I sewed it onto a small scrap of fabric left over from a sewing project.
‘something’, small rope work on found fabric, 29 cm w x 4 cms h, February 2014.
After finishing this I realised that by using the bright red thread I’d created ‘something’ rather than nothing.
I think I fared better with my second attempt, a row of even smaller sections of rope sewn down with a more neutral coloured thread.
‘nothing’, rope sewn on found fabric, 30 cm w x 4cms h, February 2014,
This piece also brings to mind inland clouds – these picture-book clouds float by them selves in a summer sky offering no prospect of rain.
To shamelessly borrow from one of the other artists participating in this exercise “nothing is defined by something.”
Spirit of Giving, Leonie Andrews, 2013, cotton stitching on canvas
Tomorrow, 10 May, sees the opening of Off the Square an exhibition that I am in along with 8 other artists – Paul Dumetz, Myles Gostelow, Trenna Langdon, Moraig McKenna, Peter Minson, Vicki Passlow, Rozalie Sherwood and Kate Ward – at the Belconnen Arts Centre. I’m really excited because my work, above, has been used to publicise the show, woo hoo! This piece took me a month to stitch, that is after I had developed the design from photographs taken by my partner, just after Christmas of the charity bins at our local shopping centre.
All the work for the show was dropped off earlier this week so I’m feeling somewhat aimless after several months of hard work. Now I’m starting to develop new designs for some future unspecified show. This time I’m keeping a time sheet to try and keep track of how long each piece takes me.
I was flattered the other day when I found out that some of my work had been ‘pinned’ on Pinterest, but what made me go ‘mmm’ was that when I looked at the boards where my work was I saw a heck of a lot of other work that was very similar to what I was doing. Similar materials and techniques, on trend?, or more part the herd than I had realised.
So my decision (made before I looked at Pinterest) to make some changes to my latest A4 piece #12, seemed like a good idea now. I looked at the base of my lastest A4 project #12 and thought that it would be very easy to leave this piece as it is, quite tasteful.
However, that’s not really the reason I’m making these pieces, to play safe. Later in the day I found a quote from American textile artist Lenore Tawney, “To be an artist you must be brave.” So here it is, a challening fabric and a work that is braver rather than safe – otherwise how will I develop?