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May 23, 2012 - June 10, 2012
Textile practitioners Liz Gemmell, Beth Hatton, Irene Manion and Barbara Rogers explore environmental issues, abstraction through geometric pattern and innovative garment design.
Liz Gemmell’s ongoing passion is to search out and refine garment designs that have a geometric simplicity. She started with knitting and then moved to felting, using nuno, lace and 3D techniques. Knitting enables her to shape a garment while simultaneously exploring surface design, and felting allows her to make the garment reversible in colour and texture, and to use soluble stabilizer and machine embroidery. Recently, she has been felting and shaping hand knits, and recycling commercially produced knitwear into new works. Gemmell has taught knitting design for over 20 years and currently lectures part-time in textiles and dyeing at the University of Technology, Sydney. She has exhibited throughout NSW and is an exhibiting member of The Society of Arts and Crafts of NSW.
Beth Hatton’s work focuses on the impact of settlement on the Australian environment. In a series of rugs woven with kangaroo skin offcuts and wool, she explores the effects of colonisation on native mammals, while her sculptures stitched from plant materials comment on the various tools of settlement. After discovering the achievements of landholders, who are restoring the health of their farms through holistic land management, she began stitching a series of celebratory vessels from native grasses. Hatton has exhibited across Australia and overseas – Japan, Germany, USA, received numerous awards including two Australia Council grants (1996, 2000) and is represented in major public collections including the National Gallery of Australia.
Irene Manion explores a range of personal and environmental issues in her textile works, which she has exhibited since the early 1980s. Her original training was in Fine Arts at Sydney University and for many years she has taught art in high schools. She works in a variety of media, including dye-sublimation onto synthetic fabrics, and has devised her own machine stitching techniques. She often develops her designs from her own digital photographs which she adapts using Adobe Illustrator and Photoshop. She has participated in many exhibitions in Australia and overseas -South East Asia, New Zealand and most recently, the Cornell Lab of Ornithology in Ithaca, New York, USA.
Barbara Rogers has worked with shibori since the late 1980s. After training and working in Fashion Design in Sydney, she attended many shibori workshops, in Australia and overseas. Rogers constantly sketches ideas for new designs, often inspired by her love of African and 1920s pattern. She uses simple geometric shapes to create a contrast between dyed and undyed areas of the cloth. Combining carved-board clamped-resist with traditional shibori, Rogers discharges dyes from the fabrics, then overdyes them in other colours to produce highly complex textiles. Rogers has exhibited nationally and internationally, and participated in the last six shibori symposia. In 2005 she exhibited in ARTWEAR – Fashion and Anti-fashion at the Fine Arts Museum of San Francisco. Her works are in numerous private and public collections.