22 April 2010

A word from Frances Stevenson - printed textile designer

Colour is the most fundamental part of each printed textile piece that I make, and I use it to provoke an emotional response in the viewer.  The viewers’s sensory engagement with colour provokes a response that delves into their own personal experience but also reflects cultural norms. For example, tangerine still conjures up painted woodchip wallpaper from the 1960’s for me, but at the same time it reflects 60’s culture. I usually avoid using tangerine as a general rule. However the point is that how we feel is often shaped by cultural as well as personal experience.

Cloth is one of the most sensual products that human beings engage with. We wear it every day and have done so all our lives.  ‘We’ have an exceptional sensory knowledge of it and we touch it to understand if it ‘suits’ us. The textiles that I make must satisfy the sense of touch, as there is a universal understanding of weight, drape, comfort and pleasure in cloth products that I seek to combine with the visual sense.

People are fantastic. ‘We’ like to play, show off, talk, make new things and make ourselves look and feel great. I have been bringing these human components together in the participatory craft process. The process gives the public centre stage to design and make their own creations bringing all of their own knowledge and experience into play. This inspires me to create new textile products that can be enjoyed by everyone.

Frances Stevenson, April 2010
New work  currently on show at the Future Craft research exposition in the Matthew Gallery, Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art & Design, Dundee.

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