At a time when knitting circles spring up in the most unlikely of places and techniques such as upholstery, carving and stitching emblematise contemporary ‘cool’, O3 Gallery presents an exhibition to explore how this reclaiming of traditional craft, by popular culture, has ‘woven’ its way into the ‘art world’.
Presented in association with the O3 Gallery’s collaborative initiative ‘Crafty Networking’, this exhibition showcases a selection of artwork created by contemporary practitioners. Spanning a wide range of techniques and processes, the work includes meticulously knitted abstract ‘paintings’ by Erez Solo Rimon, playful figurative ‘drawings’ created by Harriet Riddell and her roaming sewing-machine-studio, and intricate ‘stitchings’ by Roanna Wells and Amanda Hislop. Julia Snowdon’s work transcends the gallery space, as she unleashes a flurry of ‘yarn-bombs’ across the Oxford Castle site, including a series of tree ‘jumpers’ inspired by textile patterns found on garments worn by prisoners in the 19th Century.
Retaining a strong emphasis on method and process the exhibition includes a number of live performances. Harriet Riddell will create impromptu stitched portraits for gallery visitors and recent Oxford Brookes University graduate, Alex Walker, will present a durational performance across the first week of the exhibition, where she will build a human-sized clay bowl, physically immersing herself in her craft.