Monday, 8 July 2019

Mary Gamester lecture

Mary Gamester is best known for her skill in transfer painting - using disperse dyes to colour synthetic fabrics. She is also a very talented quilted and we were delighted to welcome her to talk to us about her travels in Uzbekistan, India and Vienna.

Mary started her talk in Uzbekistan and showed us lots of amazing samples of the suzani embroidery - all done in tiny chainstitch.  They dont use images of animals or people for religious reasons so there is lots of very subtle symbolism built into the embroidery - for example an 8 point star means eternity. 

She also explained Ikat dyeing where the warp threads are dyed first to create the patterns.  We were surprised at how prevalent velvet and velour type materials are in such a hot country.   Mary was also inspired by the patterns and colours in the tiles and has made several pieces of work using these as her starting point.

She had always wanted to go to India having been inspired by a teacher and when she finally went she fell in love. Now she has been 6 times.   This was the second country she told us about.  Her main theme from this country was, of course, elephants but she was also inspired by the large amounts of Shisha work and has made bags etc incorporating these mirrors.  The delicacy of the work was again quite breathtaking.

Her final tour stop was Vienna where she found it very hard to track down Hundertwasser but she did eventually and her piece with all the houses on was fun.

Thank you Mary for that lovely talk and all the inspiring samples you had to show - no wonder you always go with 2 suitcases.

a lovely  long waistcoat Mary made

india inspired elephants of course!

another fabulous jacket using indian fabric

Pieces inspired by India

textile transfers in action

inspired by Hundertwasser

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