Dimensions:820mm x 160mm h x 80mm
Medium: handwoven harakeke (NZ flax – phormium tenax); wire
My weaving journey with harakeke (NZ flax) began about 20 years ago at a Westland High weekend class. Since then I have gradually morphed from a maths teacher into a fibre artist with a deep passion for harakeke – both natural and dyed – as well as other plant fibres. I create woven art works for the wall, sculptural objects, baskets and kete, many of which have found new homes all over the world. I grow most of the materials I use in my work. My home and studio in Kaniere are set in a large garden and native bush; these surroundings feed and inspire my creativity. Visitors are welcome by appointment.
I am always looking at new ways of incorporating harakeke into my art work. This work is created from narrow strips looped and knotted in a technique taught to me by the late Tungia Baker. While I have made a few smaller works using the technique, this is the largest to date. It was created earlier in 2020 as part of a body of work with holes and curves for the Gold.Flax.Paper exhibition. The curve, a whiri/plait created from four whenu/strips woven around wire to keep its shape, allows the delicate golden work to float on the wall, creating interesting shadows. Images never do it full justice.
In early March 2020 I left home for seven weeks to visit family in NZ and Australia. But a week later I returned home due to the rapidly changing Covid-19 situation and soon the country was in lockdown. It took some time to get back into my fibre art. I just wanted to be in the garden or kitchen. I had some works ready to dispatch that had to be put on hold and others that needed to be created. Gradually, I got back into creating again and it was so good to be able to do this without interruptions from normal activities. Then I started getting a surge of enquiries through my website, far more than I have ever had, and this is continuing. I am busier and more inspired than ever!