Photo: Lucy Brown in Brighton, South East

Lucy Brown


“Brown uses the discarded clothing of the old - vintage undergarments, slips and petticoats, intimate materials in colours called 'rose' or 'mint' or even 'flesh' - to form the raw material of her tense, suspended, offerings. She's self- confessedly interested in the edges, the boundaries of the weave and of the clothing. Labels and stitched seams get reconfigured in her works and demonstrate the body selvedge's and sewn places where skin dustings lodge that are so evocative in Brown's work.” Extract from Thread Bare exhibition essay 2010 by Dr Catherine Harper MA, FHEA, FRSA.

Sourcing, collecting and making are core motivations in the work. Raw materials are gathered from second hand clothes shops, markets and eBay. These items are selected and deconstructed through methods of cutting, unpicking and ripping. Free-hand weaving techniques are developed through physical, sensory, emotional and psychological engagement with selected clothing - the speculative play around the visible and invisible history and the internal and external surfaces all contribute to these responses. There is a seductive and obsessive drive with the raw materials, which fuels the desire to make and physically interact with the garments. Weaving is both language and method to reconstruct/ re-invent these raw materials exploring ideas around re-telling/ re-working histories, re-claiming / re-configuring female body image. Weaving by tradition is slow and labour intensive and time becomes part of the process. The woven offerings develop over two stages; first stage - loom state, will normally takes place in the privacy of the studio space. The second- limbo state, is when works are cut loose from the loom and are extended and realised in the gallery. At this point there are themes around the unfinished and unresolved, meaning that works are in a constant state of 'becoming'. Site specific works of 2012 have opened up opportunities to make a short film, introduce human hair as a raw material and use lace net curtains as a translucent boundary.

Brown has been exhibiting since 1996 and has contributed to a range of art projects and education programmes for arts organisations, schools, colleges and universities. She is currently an exhibiting and committee member of The 62 Group of Textiles Artists. Her work has been featured in Dr Jessica Hemmings' latest book - 'Warp & Weft' (2012) and Unravelled Arts 'Unravelling Nymans' publication (2012). Independent Curator Kate Stoddart has recently reviewed Browns' 'Offerings' on a-n Interface

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Location Brighton, South East
Activities Practice-based research, Residencies, Workshops, Exhibitions programme, Studio practice
Artforms / type of project Education project, Installation, Intervention, Sculpture, Textiles
Tags clothing, exhibition, textile, site-specific, installation, education, weave, collecting, feminism, craft / art

News & Events

  • ‘The Dreaming House’| Art Textiles at Newstead Abbey| Exhibition

    18/07/2015 – 27/09/2015
    Newstead Abbey, Ravenshead, Nottinghamshire, NG15 8NA

    This summer, my works; ‘Squeeze’ and ‘Petti-fur-coat’, are part of ‘The Dreaming House’ Exhibition. ‘The Dreaming House’ pays homage to Newstead Abbey’s history as the ancestral home of Lord Byron.

    Find out more

  • ‘From Back to Front’ online exhibition

    23/07/2015 – 23/07/2016
    American Tapestry Alliance Website

    Curated by Professor Jessica Hemmings and commissioned by the American Tapestry Alliance and the Laffer Curatorial Program, is now live on ATA website. Supporting exhibition essay by J. Hemmings.

    Find out more

  • the secrets we keep from ourselves...

    Lucy is currently stabilising this work and writing up instalment instructions which are needed when the complex large scale work gets acquisitioned into Nottingham's Museums Textile Art Collections.

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