Sunday, 26 December 2021

Under the Surface

I am delighted to have two of my textile pieces in MADE IN IRELAND exhibition at the National Design and Craft Gallery in Kilkenny.
With work by over 100 makers from all over Ireland I am very proud to be included.
The exhibition is on until end January 2022 with further venues to follow.
Big thank you to curators  @hilarymorleyvisualartist, Mary Gallagher @blue_egg_gallery, @stephen.o.connell and all the team at @dccireland and @ndcgallery for all their hard work and expertise to create such a beautiful strong collection.

My two pieces are on theme ‘Under the Surface’ , because what goes on underground is as fascinating as above !
Here is a small blog post about making one of the embroideries,‘Under the Surface (Garden)’ textile art embroidery wrapped on 30cm x 30cm canvas.


I started out with a rough sketch of layout for above and below surface.


I then dyed silk with flowers, leaves and rust to get a base for earth.
I stitched over felt stone shapes and included scrim and frayed fabric to add texture.


I wanted bright strong flowers to contrast with the roots beneath.
So I choose deep reds and purples and strong centers of bullion stitch. 


To link the story of above and below I embroidered a bluebird pulling up worms.
I love hand stitching because it gives me so much control of movement.
I stitched the bird separately and then carefully cut close and restitched into place.
For the worms  . . . I added some antique nails (salvage from Spanish church c1750 )


Underground is a fascinating place, full of interacting roots and hidden treasures.
I love the structure of bulbs and rooting that seem to dance under the surface.
I used some natural mulberry bark as it has so much fiber and texture.
To give some colour I dyed with tea and a little rust, then teased it out to form the network of roots.


Flower bulbs are amazing things and I tried to show some of their layers with
different fabrics and frayed tulle. I used watercolour pencils to shade the bulb.


My duo of ‘Under the Surface’ textile art on canvas hang in the ‘Made in Ireland’ exhibition until end January 2022 and then on to further venues 
INSTAGRAM: @marymoorkens

4 comments:

  1. Amazing, thanks for sharing the process!!

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  2. Wow Mary, this was wonderful. Thank you for showing us how it all comes together. Your work is truly beautiful!

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  3. You're work is stunning-I am so blessed to have been able to buy 8 of your smaller pieces-sure would love a bigger one! Thank you.

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  4. Absolutely spectacular! I love your composition, colors, layering of fabrics, creation of texture & depth & concept! Linda

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