Cut Cloth is an exhibition, publication and series of workshops that examine the shifting role of textiles within contemporary feminist art practices.
This publication contemplates the rise in popularity of art textiles and a contemporary reflection on it’s value as a specifically feminist mode of expression. Once a belittled and marginalized medium, in the 60s and 70s it was a radical act [in itself] to bring women’s work into the gallery space. Artists looked to both subvert and celebrate textiles in order to disrupt the very femininities that it played a role in constructing. This seemingly paradoxical project is both a reclamation and elevation and is by no means finished. Textiles still occupy an ambiguous space between art, craft, private and public space. However the increasing visibility of textiles in galleries and the historical reappraisal of both textiles and feminism must be reflected upon. Cut cloth looks toward tactics that respond to these new challenges, drawing upon feminist legacies whilst acknowledging the shifting politics of cloth in contemporary culture.
Alongside the contemporary exhibition there will be an archive exhibition exploring the legacies of textiles and feminism in Manchester. Objects include loans from The People's History Museum, The Pankhurst centre, The African Fabric Shop, Warp & Weft and the Portico collection.