Tell us a little about you and your work
I am a textile artist and educator. I play with bright, bold colours and thick fibres incorporating these into radical large scale artwork.
How did you get started?
I began knotting with macramé as a child in the 70s and then revisited crafting around 8 years ago. I am an architect and felt that my career was losing the hands on process, and it is dominated by computers. So when I moved to the southern highlands from Sydney I enrolled myself into Sturt art and craft centre and studied tapestry weaving for a year. I broke away from the more traditional crafting that I was taught and began to experiment with textural fibres incorporating these into radical large scale artwork. I now hand dye all my wool and rope and tend to play with bright, bold colours and thick fibres. I also marry the two crafting techniques, macramé and weaving to create unique contemporary textiles which is important in my design and artistic practice.
What has been your proudest creative accomplishment?
I recently completed a weave that has been sitting on my large loom for almost 3 years. It was so satisfying cutting it off the loom, and now I’m pretty proud that it sits above my bed. I also have an exhibition at Koskela in Sydney with some radical pieces that I would say I’m pretty proud of.
What does creativity mean to you?
Creativity is everything. Think outside the square and use the right hemisphere of the brain. For me is the essence of living.
Is there a creative skill you would personally like to master?
Actually I’d love to learn to sew. I can weave, knot, knit, crochet, paint, design buildings and interiors but can’t sew. My mother was a professional dressmaker but never actually taught me how to sew. I think that would be pretty awesome to be able to use a sewing machine like a master.
Tea or coffee?
Large flat white, I’ve travelled a bit and I will have to say Australia does do a good coffee, thanks to the Italian immigrants in the 60s!
Who is your biggest creative crush?
Without a doubt Shelia Hicks, completely my inspiration. Now in her 90s. She was bold and bright and big in the 60s and 70s. She’s truly my biggest creative crush in weaving. I would say in painting Laura Jones and ceramics, Alex Standen.
What inspires you?
Colours inspire me, travel inspires me and then coming back to my tranquil surrounds lets me put it all together.
Tell us about your creative process… is there a ritual or process or do you just follow the call when it strikes?
Definitely follow the call. I constantly have ideas and dreams. In my life it’s all about finding the time to be able to action the creative process and follow up on those ideas and dreams. I think I sometimes have too many.
When is the most creative/productive time of the day for you?
Definitely during the day. Where I live is particularly cold and it’s hard to move during early hours. I also have 3 children, so when they are at school is when I can usually work and create. If I’m not travelling or teaching on weekends I’m usually playing art and craft with my children. They are all 3 creative souls and are also passionate about making and creating things.
Can you share a technique you use for getting your creative juices flowing?
I think that because I’m always creating, it’s rare that I don’t have those juices flowing. However I think if you clear your mind and get out to the country or a clear space away from the hustle and bustle of city life it comes more naturally.
Favourite weapon of craft and why?
Well that would definitely be wool. Wool is my favorite weapon of choice. I love wool, and not just the wool product but everything about wool. From the sheep, the famer, the sheepdog, the raw fleece, the carding, the roving and the yarn. My favourite wool is from the merino. I also dye all my own wool which is incredibly satisfying being able to produce the colours of your choice.
Where else can we find you?