I am offering courses for beginners and developing weavers in both the autumn term 2016 and spring term 2017 at Tunbridge Wells Adult Education College. I am also offering a summer course 2017 for those who have completed the beginner and intermediate courses or are of a similar standard. If you are unsure which course would be best for you and are interested please be in touch with me and we can figure it out together.
Between the 23rd and 27th May I’ll be holding some workshops at the Buddhafield Green Earth Awakening in Devon.
In this workshop you can learn how to weave on a simple cardboard loom. We will be weaving with woollen yarn and using cardboard looms that are easy to make D.I.Y versions of at home. This workshop will give you basic weaving skills and the chance to create your own woven piece. You could make a mini blanket, a wall pieces, wallet or small bag.
Felt bead making
In this workshop you will learn basic wet felting principles and create felted balls/beads that can later be made into jewellery in the macramé jewellery workshop. For those of you who’ve been to the basic weaving workshop you can bring along your woven piece and give it a felted finish at this workshop.
In this workshop you will use a macramé technique to create a piece of hemp jewellery. There will be a selection of glass and wooden beads to use. If you have been to the felt bead making workshop bring the beads along and you can use them to create a piece of jewellery.
This workshop is an introduction to tablet weaving and you’ll get a chance to make a strong narrow band. The band can be used as decorative edging for textiles, a waistband, drawstring, bag handle, shoelace, bookmark or bracelet etc. This technique requires very little equipment, can be done in most places and can be taken down and set up again at any point during the weaving process.
I will be exhibiting ‘Shadow’ as part of the exhibition ‘Revealing the invisible’ in Margate from the 11th to 17th April 2013. The exhibition will show pieces by many different artists with chronic health conditions which show how it is to live with chronic illness.
I have had rheumatoid arthritis for 15 years since 1998. Now I’m 32. During that time I have done lots of self-portraits. All these pieces show deep feelings that I struggled with at the time I created them. It has been a cathartic process to create artwork showing emotions that I couldn’t speak about at the time. This piece was done in 2003 when I was 23. I choose this piece for “revealing the invisible” because it describes so well how I felt at a time when rheumatoid arthritis was a huge factor in my life and I was experiencing overwhelming pain every day. I had reached an emotional and physical low through the constant pain I was in and had lost my independence which was soul destroying to me. I have drawn the terrified ghost or shadow of my faded being hovering between the worlds of life and death, surrender and fight, fear and acceptance, joy and despair. The picture is simple and stark because so were the themes of what my life had been reduced and evolved to. Showing ‘This piece’ means connecting with other people through my disease rather than being isolated and it’s about being fully honest about what it’s like living with rheumatoid arthritis at the same time as being human.
I have been applying to exhibition spaces over the last few months and am waiting to hear back from a few places including the royal portrait gallery and the dugout festival. Its a bit disempowering putting lots of time and erergy into applications and then waiting for someone else to let you know whether they think anyone will want to see your work. So instead, if you stumble across this page and like what you see let me know on firstname.lastname@example.org and i might be up for exhibiting some of my work in your space.
I’m creating new works which combine textiles and painting and i feel very light and bouncy about it.
I’ve been listening to the excited, interested, joyful and open childlike part of myself and letting that lead me into a creative space where I have a massive smile on my face and joy in my heart.
Ive posted a couple of my works in progress…
From tomorrow I will be exhibiting as a guest artist at The General open house and kitchen at number 1 The High Street in Ditchling together with Clare Gravenell. Check out: http://www.thegeneralrestaurant.com/#!art and for more info about Clare Gravenell’s work see: http://www.claregravenell.co.uk/
I will be showing vibrant textile pieces including the new pieces Firelines and Alchemy!
Come check it out and get some luxury lunch in a beautiful sussex villiage at the same time!
On the 24th May i will be exhibiting my work as part of Queer the Space project in London.
If you want to come sign up as there is limited capacity! http://queerthespace.eventbrite.com/
Here’s the link to the website: http://www.queerthespace.org/
Heres a little bit about my contribution here!
‘museum’ is a collaboration between Claire Bessel; Textile Artist and Weaver and Sarah Barnsley; Poet. ‘museum’ opens up and presents queer material in a non prescriptive way and redefines the traditional framework in which museums generally exhibit by taking away the boundaries between the material and its setting/framework. The framework and material itself are interlinked and indistinguishable from each other in this exhibit where everything about the exhibit represents the theme queer space without boxing it in or shutting it into something else. This is a place of experiences and ideas. The queer material presented looks at queer very inclusively and broadly from many different angles, visually and through written word. It explores perception, gender exploration fun and games, nature, trauma and the idea of fixedness verses flexibility which is all presented under the umbrella of Queer Space.
I’m a weaver and a textile artist/craftsperson. I enjoy teaching technical textile based skills to people as well as doing my own stuff. The textile pieces I’ve worked on have ranged from apparel and accessories to wall pieces. In the wall pieces I often focus on creative gender expression and generally love playing with technique.