Its only two days to go one of the biggest events on the local arts calender, Portsmouth Uni Graduation Arts show.
The preview evening is Friday June 3 from 5-8pm. The show will then be open to the public from Monday to Saturday from the 6th to the 11th of June, 10am-4pm daily. Admission is free, and everyone is welcome. The venue is the Eldon Building, Winston Churchill Avenue, Portsmouth PO1 2DJ.
It felt right to interview a wonderful young lady who will be graduating and who has invited me to see her work, Katie Lewis.
How did you discover a love for textiles?
I guess it was during college when I did a national diploma in art and design that I discovered a love for fabric and textiles. I have always been more hands on with the materials I use and wanted to explore a more tactile surface to apply the text I write. I feel there is somthing romantic about fabric and the process of manipulating it. In terms of changing perception of what is expected.
Tell us about the pieces for your degree show?
I produced a textile installation that explores ideas surrounding form, scale, print, stitch and text. I wanted to challenge the perceived perception of sculpture and text in art.
I feel text, words and statements encourage interaction because our human conditioning draws our curiosity in and I find this extremely appealing and enticing. The text for this specific piece was a series of direct anonymous one liners concerning culture, experiences, love, life, etc.
The materials I used I feel have a delicately soft appeal that sympathetically and emotionally contrasts with the explicit text which supports and harmonizes with my individual thoughts, feelings and emotions.
What new textile skills would you like to learn?
I feel I have gone as far as I can with exploring textiles within art and would like to learn some craft techniques such as, crouching, weave and felting. I want to explore how these techniques could be applied to textile art and try to build a relationship between the notion of craft and art.
What do you see yourself doing after you have graduated?
I would like to continue exploring textiles in terms of craft techniques and further my knowledge and understanding of the discipline. I want to continue my work as a freelance textile artist however I have a desire to teach and broaden the expectations of art within education. I would like to get involved with art workshops which I have done through Pompey Stars and very much enjoyed.
What artists/makers do you admire?
Throughout my education I have become aware of many artists, designers and makers. All of which I have found extremely inspirational from various disciplines such as, fashion, fine art, textiles, text, etc. In particular I have always been fascinated with the work of Tracey Emin I feel her text speaks volumes in such a provocative manner that cannot be ignored similar to Jenny Holzer, who was my dissertation subject – ‘Jenny Holzer: Writer or Artist?’ because of her direct anonymous one liners known as ‘Truisms’ captured the essence I wish to provoke and which I based my writing for my degree piece around. I feel I am very much inspired by strong, powerful and direct women.
Will you miss Portsmouth and what do you think of the creative scene in the city?
Yes I will miss Portsmouth very much. It has been my second home for 3 years and I have loved exploring the many different areas of the city. I feel I will always have a connection with the place and will come back as offen as I can. I have always wanted, since a small child, to live by the sea and it has been very magical and inspirational. I think Portsmouth has a quite diverse creative scene within in all disciplines of the arts. There are a lot of events and things happening at the moment that have really launched the creativity that once wasn’t apparent to me. Only in the last few months I have realised potential of it all and how I will sincerely miss not being part of it.
Thanks Katie, I cant wait to go on Friday and I really wish you all the best for your future career!
Learn more about Katie Lewis at her blog: