I’m really excited about starting the residency at Bilston Craft Gallery in a few weeks. We had our first meeting last week and I met Jennifer Collier who will be doing a parallel residency at Bantock House while I am at Bilston. I’m a big fan of Jennifer’s work so it’s great that I’ll be working with her soon.
The residency project is designed to allow the two makers time to create their own work in response to the two venues, as well as reach lots of new and repeat visitors through workshops and events. I’ll be working with local schools, community groups, young people, adults and families on a range of textile and fashion projects. I’ve got lots of ideas ticking around in my head, and over Christmas I have to put together firm proposals ready to start in January.
Part of the project is for the makers to work with other creative people, and I’m hoping to work with a poet on some fashion events for adults and a storyteller to work with school groups, maybe looking at costumes for performance, or illustrations for stories. I’ve got loads of ideas of things to pursue!
The other part of the project is for me to make some new work to exhibit at the end of the residency. I started thinking about this when I was at Bilston last week, looking through their craft display. I’m quite taken with the steel jewellery, the keys and the leather work on display, so something might come from those. I’m hoping to do something quite different from my normal work during this project so I will be thinking laterally about the gallery, and about Bantock House to find some new inspiration. It’s really exciting to have the luxury of time to play around with new ideas.
Please do come back in January when I hope I’ll have some ideas to share and some dates for workshops and open days.