Artist’s statement – Sue Green, Hemel Hempstead
I’ve always sewn, loving the colours and textures unique to textiles; it’s about the thread, the colour, the stitch, shapes and structure and time – not a medium to be rushed. Each item has taken approximately 100-120 hours from inception to completion. My current drive is to show textiles as an art form rather than a craft. I take my inspiration from nature, flowers in particular, and enjoy the challenge of portraying natural structures in a variety of threads and stitches. I have been a member of the Embroiderers’ Guild for over 10 years, and recently joined the Eastern Region Textile Forum.
Last year, I completed a hand stitching course with the Embroiderers’ Guild under the tuition of the Technical Director, Anthea Godfrey whose influence is great. The final piece for the course was the canvaswork ‘Stargazer Lily’. There’s something about the lily in the garden, the flower looks painted, heavily perfumed, it sings from the border – brightening and lifting the day. Its this energy that I tried to bring out in the canvaswork. Using tapestry wool in the background gives warmth and a glow, oversewn using a variety of stitches with stranded cotton gives definition and a depth. Finally using tapestry wool and stranded cottons together helps bring out the detail and makes the stamen and anthers stand out.
In April, I exhibited in the Eastern Region Textile Forum’s Kaleidoscope exhibition in Cambridge. The canvaswork design was inspired by a child’s toy and the vibrant colours and glow of venetian beads. The underlayer is sewn with tapestry wool using cross stitch and herringbone stitch then oversewn with cottons using straight stitch, stem stitch and back stitch to lift and define the shapes and textures of the beads.