Sunday, May 21, 2017

Wearable Art Mandurah

Last year I entered Common Threads Wearable Art competition for the first time and was fortunate to be selected as a finalist. Many wearable art competitions have disappeared over the last few years and there are fewer opportunities to display my work on a live model these days. Sadly the only one in Sydney now is more performance art and does not place a high value on the craftsmanship of sewing and construction, in fact you can adapt something you have purchased with no problems at all. It’s a shame my dresses have to travel so far but if they must it’s wonderful that the pieces at Common Threads have been made with a lot of skill and care.
After such a great experience last year the opportunity came up to apply for a project called Wearable Art Whispers. Common Threads, now called Wearable Art Mandurah were seeking six artists, Australia wide, to collaborate and share a unique journey. A chance to create a garment much more than the sum of its parts - it’s a chance to portray the wonder that can be created from a shared love for art and beauty. The outfit was to travel from state to state, artist to artist with each person contributing something towards the piece. After much encouragement from project co-ordinator and artist Anzara Clark I decided to apply. In the end 7 artists (Tanya da Silva, Deb Hiller, Louise Wells, Sue Sacchero, Philomena Hali, Larissa Murdock and myself) were chosen including an accessories specialist. The theme for the Wearable Art Whispers Project is ‘La Mariposa’ (Butterfly Woman) This theme is drawn from the myth explored in Clarissa Pinkola Est├ęs’ Women Who Run with the Wolves. In the beginning I had many ideas of how I would contribute and at each stage as the garment progressed my ideas had to change. So much of the work had been completed by the time it got to me that I felt I must make wings for this butterfly. Described in the book as having child-like wings I sought to combine this idea with the pieces created by the artists before me. Usually I work with recycled materials but this time I had the perfect fabric at home left over from a previous competition that I never used.
I am looking forward to seeing the final piece and especially photos of it being worn during the wearable art parade. I also am looking forward to seeing how this project evolves in the future.
CommonThreads photo credit:Troy Tropiano

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