While we're all twiddling our thumbs and waiting for @#!*&% COVID to end so we can re-schedule Fabric of the North, we thought we'd let you know what some of our exhibitors are up to.
First up, Jane Riley: Jane was due to exhibit in Tapestry Touring International's exhibition of small-scale works by British and Canadian weavers, which got hit by COVID and had to close. Instead, the organisers decided to put up an online display of weavings by TTI exhibitors past and present. Jane contributed one of her lovely seaweed tapestries. You can see the entire display - and very attractive it is - at TTI's website. Well worth a visit.
Fabric of the North is postponed, but at least one of the tapestries which would have been on show in Cromford is winging its way instead to Norway House in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Sally Reckert's Children March into an Unknown Future takes its inspiration from the Norwegian Baldishol Tapestry, woven in about 1180, so where better to show it than in America's most Scandinavian state? (Have you seen that wonderful movie, Fargo?)
Amazingly, the exhibition, The Baldishol: A Medieval Norwegian Tapestry Inspires Contemporary Textiles, is still scheduled to go ahead, from 26 June to 30 August. You can find details in the Norwegian Textile Letter, produced in Minnesota by British Tapestry Group member Robbie LaFleur.
Let's hope Sally's tapestry doesn't put down roots on the other side of the Atlantic! We'll want it back again for the re-scheduled Fabric of the North, whenever that may be.
One of our tapestries has a particularly poignant background: the catalogue entry describes how Living Local was created by a group of disadvantaged young children. Now we've received a lovely video clip of the moment when the work was cut off from the loom. A party followed!
Well, it's a huge shame that Fabric of the North has had to be postponed. But in the spirit of "Let's do the show right here!", we've published the catalogue anyway; so if you visit the CATALOGUE page above you can enjoy the exhibition online. Of course it's not as good as the real thing, but we hope it'll whet your appetite in the meantime.
[Website editor here - I've just had the chance to see all the images together on the Catalogue page for the first time, and I think it looks terrific! There's a wide range of styles and experience on show; it's a blend of the colourful, the lively, the thoughtful, landscapes and narratives... Wonderful! Well done to all the weavers involved. I can't wait to see Fabric of the North when it finally opens.]
CORONAVIRUS UPDATE 19 MARCH 2020 - The Cromford exhibition is now provisionally set for 2021. The exhibition at Kirkleatham is under review; please check here for updates. All other information on this site should be treated as superseded or provisional until further notice. We do apologise and look forward to happier times, when normal service will be resumed. If you have queries, contact firstname.lastname@example.org
Ticketing has now opened for talks and professional workshops in Cromford. See Events page. Don't delay - book your place today! And tell your friends and fellow-weavers about Fabric of the North.
A great attraction at Fabric of the North is the free, drop-in, do-it-yourself Wacky Wall, which offers visitors of all ages an enjoyable and light-hearted experience of tapestry weaving. Visiting families and children will be encouraged to help build the ‘wall’ by weaving tapestry 'bricks'.
A large loom allows for a large tapestry, and two weavers will be able to work side by side. Colourful yarns, glittery beads and other attractive embellishments will be supplied, as well as swing tag labels so each weaver can immortalise their name in the work. Volunteer stewards will be on hand to offer advice and encouragement, and supply more information and resources for anybody who decides they would like to pursue tapestry weaving in future.
The beautiful yarns in the Wacky Wall have been generously supplied by Airedale Yarns of Shipley, West Yorkshire.
Wacky Wall: open daily at Cromford Mills, 7 May to 23 May.
We've added two new drop-in workshops to Fabric of the North, so visitors can have a go at fabric-making. On 16 May, Manchester fashion-house owner Ibukun Baldwin demonstrates colourful braiding techniques, and on 17 May the artist Tan Draig invites visitors to help create mini-tapestries. Make a date in your diary! Bring your children or grand-children!
Jane Walkley, who’ll lead a Fabric of the North workshop in Cromford, had works on display recently in a joint exhibition at Leeds Art University.
A visitor from the Weaving Rooms in Darlington, Jane Riley, wrote:
"Jane’s Jesmonite and tapestry 3D pieces have a really powerful presence. The colours were beautiful with metallic flecks, and some had slivers of copper sheet. She talked of the rhythm of the weavers, and the memories of the workers' chant as they used their hands."
Tickets for Jane Walkley’s workshop on 3D mixed-media weaving will go on sale on early 2020. Watch this space.