Influences

My work is about memory. I work mainly with used textiles. I am interested in womens’ past associations with textiles. Making, decorating, mending and washing household textiles and clothing used to take up a large portion of womens’ time and energy. From childhood girls would have learned needlework, neat stitching for decoration and strength. Keeping clothes clean and the whiteness of the washing line, the household linen in good order was an important measure on the local society of the woman’s worth and morals.
Clothes define us, they tell the outside world who we are and how we want to be seen. Clothing and bed linen take on certain characteristics of the wearer. The position we sleep in, the wear on collar and cuffs, the bits that bobble with rubbing and wear. Our skin cells rub into the weave of the fabric and are held there even through washing. Clothing has associations and memories marking key moments in our lives: christenings, confirmations, weddings etc. The clothing worn for these occasions is frequently carefully folded, stored and saved, then opened, stroked, sniffed and held up to bring back the memories of the special day and those involved.

I work mainly with used textiles but also with wire which I like to weave to form body shapes but which also rusts and breaks, it stains and rots fabrics and threads it is in contact with. Old photographic images are also important to me, I print them onto textiles and cut and tear into them. Text remembered from times of lifes’ key moments, and words that define who we have become are of increasing importance to me.
My work is not about dwelling in the past but about remembering fragments of the past that are in part who we are today.