The beautiful man

The beautiful man

Tuesday, 16 August 2011

Stephen Jones competition
Victoria & Albert Museum
Stephen Jones
Bard Graduate Centre NY

All the above have got together along with to launch a competition for a milliner to be chosen by Stephen Jones and Vogue to exhibit in his forthcoming New York exhibition in the Bard Centre. Its a fantastic idea and really has brought some incredible designs in millinery to the forefront as you will see if you visit the talenthouse site. It is also being run as a voting competition which is not the most pleasant of things for someone not renowned for pushing herself forward! So if you would like to support me the image above is my entry and you need to vote through talenthouse site or you can text.

hat voting


Text: TH 83HC2Q
to: 447781487170207

thank you xx

there are some stunning UK hats so its worth a browse through to see the talent here as well as much further afield. it will be a very difficult job to judge the best hat methinks.

Wednesday, 10 August 2011

Then the rain came

Scotland invariably means a bit of rain otherwise it wouldn't look so lush and beautiful...It definitely rained today so I was glad that I did the stream shots yesterday but ever the experimentalist thought I would try again today with a very full stream. My river walking would have been quite hilarious if anyone had been watching as I tried to retrieve the dress!

not quite the limpid water of yesterday!
So the string broke with the current......

May need to go in the wash now.

Practice after the tutorial

Having mentioned my tutorial for the MA with Alice Kettle, one of her suggestions was to work on a broderie anglais dress that I have purchased from the high street. Purchased to reference the increased levels of manufacture and consumption at ever lower prices. The dress I have bought is fine white cotton with broderie anglais we checked its measurements to see if it had been made on the schiffli machine which it hadn't, also checked whether there was any repetition of slight flaws as to whether it was made on a multi head embroidery machine, this also seemed unlikely so it was possible that the dress that I had purchased in the sale for £11 had been hand machine embroidered using an Irish Machine, highly labour intensive.

So this brings into play a range of questions and observations, but how to draw this to others attention without it being information overload. The suggestion of small interventions in the garment or photographing in different context to make us look again. This is what I did.

In the stream
The water just sat on the surface even after 5 mins in the stream

Friday, 5 August 2011

MA Show

As well as rushing around doing the last bit of writing and practical work we have a show to put on for the last week of September for the MA. So all the MA disciplines for the first time this year will be showing together. Well we shall use this word loosely as they are at four different sites across Manchester. The Holden Gallery which is part of All Saints Campus where i will show and 3 & 4 Piccadilly Place where the remainder of the students will show. we visited on Thursday to mixed responses. Anyway pictures attached to help those of my colleagues who may not have seen the space and yourselves to conjure up ideas. we are not able to build walls as you would in an end of year show so its an interesting curating challenge.

curved space

square space

Privilege Day 2

During my MA at MMU I have had some interesting tutorials with different members of staff but i have often been reluctant to approach some as they seem far too important to want to talk about my work! It is only as the two years draws to a close that I realise that you rarely get such opportunities so grab them with both hands quickly (wish I had done it sooner to quote another tutor 'Shy bairns get nought') Anyway that rambling way around was to introduce that I had a tutorial with internationally renowned textile artist Alice Kettle yesterday, I was quite nervous but I really needn't have been. As I have seen before the most talented people are invariably the most sharing and generous with thoughts and ideas and indeed she was.
'In the Guise of an Angel' V&A Collections

Alice Kettle
Alice was one of the first textile artists that I encountered when I began this pathway 15 years ago and her work has always fascinated me, when she spoke to the MA group last year about the art commissioning process it was really fascinating and you could see how grueling the work was and is.
The tutorial was very rewarding in the sharing of ideas and inspiration and more importantly she genuinely was interested. So i feel back on track again after my backward mind map highlighted that I needed help it certainly was the case, so i now have some work to complete for the next one in three weeks.

Some days are a real privilege

That feeling of wanting to pinch oneself that one is so lucky happen rarely but i was fortunate to have two this week.

Privilege day 1- I have been helping out at Hat Works doing some research for them, just being in the museum when no one else is is a real buzz and privilege, you see everything in a very different light. This week I have been helping label items that could be used in their up and coming trimmings exhibition. Sad but true the actual boxes on the shelves in the store are exciting enough, its like Christmas Day as you never know whats going to be inside. As you may have noted before from my posts on Platt Hall and Bankfield Museum stores are an inspiration for me.

So many interesting things some quite curious ones too mind. Unable to show you whats in line for exhibition yet that's not up to me but a quick peep into two boxes that I think all milliners would love delivered to their door. The silk veiling in particular was astonishingly beautiful.

Exhibition will open in November I will keep you posted.


Had a very productive day in Manchester the other week having a meeting with a senior lecturer at the University about research and practice as research as within my present job we are to begin doing this in a formal manner which is difficult to get ones head around as to what they want. In actual fact they want what I do already but with some written work to support it so all good. What was most inspiring was to share the meeting with colleagues! Having run the course on my own for so long its great to have other input, three heads are better than one. even more wonderful was to have someone with no knowledge of millinery really enthused by what we do, and how important it was to promote the cross disciplinary nature of millinery and the niche aspect needed preserving.

So after an  excellent brainstorming/mind mapping session we visited the  Whitworth Art Gallery to look at an exhibition of the group 'Artangel' curated by Mary Griffiths who I had had a tutorial with at testing time on the MA. Its always interesting to have different perspectives on an exhibition and space.
 Though the first piece of work didn't bode well as it gave us a headache and fear of migraine,  Tony Oursler Talking Light.
Francis Alys Guards 2004

I really liked the Francis Alys piece called Guards where he he got each member of the regiment to walk into london and meet at certain points and carry on in formation until they were a full regiment. the precision the noise, the imagery, organisation and maps of the route planning, I found fascinating.

still from 1395 days without red
One also realises the British sensibility to conform we went to watch the short film '1395 days without red' about the sniper alleys in Sarajevo in the Bosnian conflict. It was beautifully filmed and highly evocative yet i felt it had shared the experience and understanding of the fear in half an hour as did my colleagues; yet it went on for 20 more minutes we all were too shy to say actually I am done now. Though on reflection those 20 minutes illustrated the monotony of those times.

Anyway well worth a trip I gained a lot and the cafe at the Whitworth is very lovely.