The Australian Tapestry Workshop is delighted to host Artist in Residence Deborah Prior and the creation of her new collaborative textile artwork ‘One Wound / One Repair’ as part of the 2019 Craft Cubed festival.
Prior will work on-site at the ATW, transforming vintage woollen blankets into new textile artworks. Functional, symbolic and emotive, blankets share an intimate relationship to the body – signalling our vulnerable states of sleep and illness, and ultimately reflecting our own mortality through their marking, staining and wear and tear. They can be a site of respite and safety, but also speak of the burden of domestic care: Unseen, undervalued work still borne mostly by women.
Participants are invited to help Prior in the making of “One Wound / One Repair” by participating in a cyclical stitching project of care and connectivity. You will be asked to repair a small woollen hole (‘wound’) in a blanket left by a previous participant, using your choice of salvaged fabrics collected by the artist and yarns from the ATW. You will then cut your own hole in the blanket, safe in the knowledge that a future visitor will repair this for you.
Every participant will also be gifted a small votive object to take home with them that has been knitted by the artist and embellished with one the woollen wounds the community has excised from the blanket.
This project is both a meditation on the vulnerabilities of the body, and a reflection on how everyday domestic and emotional labour might be devotional acts of care worthy of far greater cultural recognition.