“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 http://www.a-n.co.uk/interface/reviews/single/2540206
CV & Education
Qualifications and training
1995 - BA Hons Textiles; 1st class hons. Goldsmiths College, University of London. UK
Dissertation: Use of clothing in Women’s Performance Art
2003 PGCE. Art & Design. Post Compulsory. Northbrook College, West Sussex. UK
Research Project: How Artists engage with Higher Education
Selected solo exhibitions (* denotes commissioned works)
2012 - Offerings for The Project Space. COLLECT 2012, Presented by the Crafts Council at the Saatchi Gallery. London. Funded by Arts Council. England. Publication.
2012 - Studio Loom View(ing), Robertson Yard Studio, Brighton
2009 - Wrapping the Jaipur Gate, Hove Museum & Art Gallery, Hove*
2006 - Trails, Hove Museum & Art Gallery, East Sussex
2004 - Art on the Walls, The Arts Council, England: South East, Brighton
2002 - Shrinking Violets, Fabrications Gallery, London
2002 - Textile Focus, Contemporary Applied Arts, London
2001 - Brown at Browns, Browns, South Molton street, London
2001 - The Brides Clothes, Angel Row Gallery, Nottingham. Publication*
2001 - The Disembodied Garment, Trinity Gallery, Kent
2000 - Intimate Foundations, Maidstone Library Gallery, Kent, touring 2001. Funded by South East Arts. England. Publication.
2000 - Shedding Skins, art.tm, Bank Street Gallery, Inverness
2000 - Shrinking Violets, Crafts Council Shop at the V and A, London
1999 - Shop window sculpture trail, Brighton Fringe Festival, North Lanes, Brighton
1998 - Lookout, Waterstones booksellers, Brighton*
Selected group exhibitions (* denotes commissioned works)
2015 - Leaving Home, Contemporary Applied Arts, London
2015 - Re-Fashioned. Arts at the Old Fire Station. Oxford
2015 - Crafting Anatomies. Bonington Gallery. Nottingham Trent University.
2014 - Ebb and Flow. A 62 Group exhibition. Fishing Heritage Centre. Grimsby. Publication
2013/14 - British Textile Art. A 62 Group Exhibition. Koyo Gallery SHOWA Women’s University. Tokyo. Japan. Publication
2013 - Small Talk, Goldsmiths Textile Collection & Constance Howard Gallery, Goldsmiths University of London, New Cross
2013 - South East Open 2013, Towner Gallery, Eastbourne
2012 - ‘62@50’ New Works Celebrating The 62 Group of Textile Artists’ 50th Anniversary, Holden Gallery. Manchester Metropolitan University. Manchester
2012 - Interventions, Gallery of Costume. Platt Hall, Manchester
2012/13 - Lace Works - Contemporary Art and Nottingham Lace, Nottingham Castle Museum & Art Gallery, Nottingham. Publication*
2012 - Unravelling Nymans: New Site-specific works commissioned by Unravelled Arts, Nymans House & Gardens National Trust Property in Partnership with Unravelled Arts, Handcross near Haywards Heath. Publication*
2011 - 7 Strands, Gate Gallery, Grimsby. Publication
2011 - HOUSE Open 2011, the Regency Town House. 13 Brunswick Square, Hove
2011 - Lost and Found, Nottingham Castle Museum and Art Gallery, Nottingham
2010 - Bending More Lines, Museum Rijswijk, Netherlands
2010/12 - Material Actions, Plymouth College of Art, Plymouth & tour till 2012. Publication
2010 - Thread Bare, Rochester Art Gallery, Rochester. Publication*
2009/10 - Bending the Line, The Hub. National Centre for Craft & Design, Sleaford & tour. Publication
2007 - Archiving the present, Collecting the Future, Constance Howard Resource Centre in Textiles. Goldsmiths University, London
2006 - Tracing Threads. New work by the 62 Group of Textile Artists, Hove Museum & Art Gallery, East Sussex. CD Catalogue
2005 - Abstracted Garments, Contemporary Applied Arts Gallery, London
2005 - Encounters, Museum of Zoology. Cambridge University, Cambridge
2005 - Reveal. Nottingham’s Contemporary Textiles, Nottingham Castle Museum & Art Gallery, Nottingham. Publication
2005 - Wearable/Unwearable, National Craft Gallery, Ireland. Publication
2004 - Merging Cultures, Merging Arts, National Gallery, Cayman Islands.
2004 - Woken with a Kiss, Hastings Museum and Art Gallery, Hastings
2003 - Material Spaces, Tullie House Art Gallery and Museum, Carlisle. Publication
2003 - The Absent Wearer, University of Essex Gallery, Colchester. Publication
2003 - The Happy Couple, Cartwright Hall Gallery, Bradford
2001 - The Unexpected, Sotheby's, New York
2000 - A Sense of Occasion, MAC, Birmingham, touring 2002 Publication
2000 - Craftscape, Bradford Gallery, Yorkshire, touring 2001 Publication
2000 - Out of the Closet, Sotheby's, London
2000 - Talente 2000, Handwerkskammere, Munchen. Publication
2000 - Waves at Goldsmiths, Alexandra Palace, London, touring
1999 - Fibre Art, The Black Swan Guild, Frome, Somerset
1999 - New Weavers, The Gallery, Stratford Leisure and Visitor Centre
1999 - Only Human, Crafts Council Gallery, London. Publication
1999 - Textiles 21, Voirrey Embroidery Centre, Wirral
1999 - The Border Land of Tapestry. Touring, Galerii Sztuki BWA, Poland. Publication
1997 - Material Matters, Bankfield Museum Halifax
1997 - Revivalist Textiles, Hebden Bridge, Arts Festival, West Yorkshire.
1996/97 - Flexible Two, Pan European Art, touring exhibition around Europe, organised by the Netherlands Textile Museum Tilburg, Netherlands, Wroclow, Poland, Manchester, England. Publication
1996 - Intertext, Otago Art Gallery, New Zealand
1996 - Material Perspectives, Crescent Arts Workshop Gallery, Scarborough
Selected artist talks
2012 - Lace: heritage and contemporary textile practice Symposium. Nottingham Trent University. Lace here now programme. A season of events taking place in and around Nottingham from September 2012 to February 2013. Nottingham Trent University
2012 - Making it: A three celebration of craft and creativity. Invited Speaker and artist contributor
2011 – 7 Strands Textile Symposium, Invited speaker. Grimsby Minster & Gate Gallery, Grimsby
2010 - Material Actions Seminar, – Invited speaker. Plymouth College of Art: Viewpoint Gallery, Plymouth
2008 - In conversation with the 62 Group. Professional Development and networking day. Speaker and facilitator, Rochester Art Gallery, Kent
2008 - Professional Development forum. Invited speaker, Crafts Council, West Dean
2006 - Trails, Hove Museum & Art Gallery, East Sussex
2005 - Art Practice and Profile, Winchester School of art: Contextual Studies, South East
2003 - Artist Professional development, Fresh Art Fair, Invited speaker. London
2003 - Artist Story, Fabrica Gallery, Brighton, East Sussex
2002 - Creative Exchange, Crafts Council, London
1999 - Evolution of a Maker, invited speaker. Crafts Council, London
Selected Professional Posts & Employment
2002-current - 62 Group of Textile Artists: Exhibiting & Committee Member. Education Officer.
2014 - University of Chichester. Visiting Artist Lecture and Tutorials. HE Fine Art Students
2014 - Shortlisted and interviewed for Houses of Parliament Artist in Residence 2014
2013 – Invited selection panellist. The Christine Risley Award. Goldsmiths. University of London
2012 - Bath Spa University. Visiting Artist
Sept 2003 – 2010 City College FE Brighton & Hove; Part time Art & Design Foundation Lecturer.
2009 - 12 The Making/NSEAD. Planning and delivering workshops for teachers, mentors and PGCE trainees. In partnership with National University Education departments. Institute of Education, London. Oxford Brookes University. University of Greenwich. St. Mary’s University. Skills in the Making programme.
2009/11 West Kent College. Textiles Foundation degree. Visiting Lecturer. Weave yr 1
2009 - University of Ulster and Ulster Museum. Belfast. Northern Ireland. Visiting Artist. Public lunchtime lecture and BA Hons Fine & Applied Arts. Year 3.
2001-08 – Hove Museum & Art Gallery. Artist workshop leader. Planned and delivered a rage of adult workshops alongside Museums Exhibition programme
2007 - Contemporary Craft Practice Focus Group: Hove Museum & Art Gallery
2005 - Northbrook College: Adult Education. Visiting Artist
2003 - Bedford College: Visiting Artist. Multifunctional Garments projects National Diploma/Foundation studies Art & Design, HNC/HND Textiles, Fine Art.
2002 - Goldsmiths College. London. Visiting Tutor. BA Hons Textiles. Yr3
2001/00 - University of Hertfordshire. Visiting Tutor. BA (Hons) Applied and Media Art; Level 1.
2000-2007 - Contemporary Applied Arts Gallery. London. Exhibiting Member
1999 - Photostore. Selected makers; Crafts Council. London
Selected Short Term Artist Residency Projects
2010 - Eco Celebration Elephant Project St Nicolas and St Mary CE First and Middle School. Shoreham by Sea. Yr 5. Resident Artist project.
2010 - Skills in the Making: Artist in Residence. The Westgate School. Slough. In partnership with The Making, Hampshire
2009 - Weaving Memories into Clothing. St Nicolas and St Mary CE First and Middle School. Shoreham by Sea. Yrs 5 & 6. Resident Artist project. School group Exhibition: Ropetackle Arts Centre.
2002/04 - Artist in Residence: Richard Huish College. Somerset A/AS level Art & Textiles
2003 - Weaving Wonders. Wonderful Things; London Museums Agency, Crafts Council & Elizabeth Garrett Anderson School. London. Planned and led Fine Art Weave workshops for EGA Pupils key stage 4.
2003 - Boundstone Community College. Lancing. 6th Form A/AS Level Art & Textiles students. Planned, organised and led Reconstructing Garment workshops.
2002 - Richard Challoner all boys School. Surrey ‘Artists in schools'.
2000/01 - Angel Row Gallery. Nottingham. The Brides Clothes; Commissioned in Partnership with Craftspace Touring. Interactive installation. Planned and led Public slide talks and workshops
1999 - Sadler's Wells Dance Project. Organised by Crafts Council and Sadler's Wells education sections. London. Collaboration with Choreographers Jamie Watton, Suz Broughton and the Lillian Baylis Over 60s Performance Group.
Competitions, prizes and awards
2012 - Funding for ‘Offerings’ making. development and presentation of new works, supported by the National Lottery through Arts Council , England
2008 - Small award towards costs of making new work, Theo Morman Weaving Trust, -
2004 - Makers Mentor Scheme, Empowering the Artist (ETA), South East
2000 - Funding for Touring Solo Exhibition: Intimate Foundations, The Arts Council. South East
1999 - Setting up Scheme, Crafts Council. London
1998 - Mentor Scheme with Artist Caroline Broadhead, Fabrica Gallery, Brighton
Selected Books – Publications – Reviews
2013 - Book ‘Lace: Here: Now’. by Amanda Briggs-Goode & Deborah Dean Black Dog Publishing
2012 - Offerings 2012 reviewed by Independent Curator Kate Stoddart. Published on AN Interface. http://www.a-n.co.uk/interface/reviews/single/2540206
2012 - Book ‘Warp & Weft’. Author Dr Jessica Hemmings Bloomsbury Publishing Plc.
2012 - Book ‘Radical Thread’ 62 Group publication Author Prof Lesley Millar MBE
2012 - May Space Suits - Project Space Artists by Teleri Lloyd-Jones. Crafts Guide to Collect
2012 - Tales of the Unfinishable. Clarke & Connors. Wide-Open House publishing
2012 - Unravelling Nymans. Artist Newsletter. Preview by Frances Lord.
2012 - Sept/Oct Unravelling… Nymans. Review. Embroidery by Liz Hoggard.
2012 - June Unravelling Nymans. On-line review. Crafts Magazine by Liz Farrlley.
2012 - May Playing in the family seat. Crafts Magazine by Teleri Lloyd-Jones
2010 - April Maker of the Month. The Making. Interviewed by Diana Woolf. www.themaking.org.uk
2007 - March Interviewed by Maggie Grey for Workshop on the Web: www.workshopontheweb.com
2006 - Nov/Dec Tracing Threads. Review. Embroidery
2002 - Aut/Wint Hanging Out the Washing. STRADA. Toni&Guy Lifestyle Magazine.
2001 - Oct Fine Art from Fashion. ELLE magazine
2001 - May The Brides Clothes. World of Embroidery.
2001 - May/June Intimate Foundations. Review; Crafts Magazine
2001 - May/June A Sense of Occasion. Review; Crafts Magazine
2001 - Mar/April Conceptual Couture; Preview; Crafts Magazine
2001 - Mar 7 Woman's Hour. Radio 4. Interview INTIMATE FOUNDATIONS
2000 - July/Aug Tipped For The Top. Art Review.
2000 - Young, Gifted and Broke. ITV broadcast. 9th March
2000. - Mar/April Only Human. Review. Crafts Magazine.
2000. - Jan/Feb Fibre Art. Review. Crafts Magazine.
1999. - July The Disembodied Garment. World of Embroidery.
1998. - March Interviewed for The Frame. BBC T.V.
1997. - Dec When is a dress unwearable. Observer Life Magazine
1997. - Sept Shedding Skins. World of Embroidery.
1997 - July Flexible 2 Review. The World of Embroidery.
1997 - July Flexible 2 Review. Crafts Magazine.
1997 - Book. Nouvel Object II. Design House. Korea.
1995 - Dec. Top Girls. Crafts Magazine.
Public & Private Collections
- The Whitworth Art Gallery. University of Manchester. Contemporary Textile Collection UK
- Contemporary Textile Resource collection, The Norwich School of Art. , East midlands UK
- Constance Howard Centre for Textiles Collection, Goldsmiths College University of London , London UK
- Private Collection of Rose Knox-Peebles, East Sussex UK
- Contemporary Textile Art Collection, Nottingham Castle Museum & Art Gallery. (with support from Contemporary Art Society and Arts Council of England), Nottingham. UK
- Brighton & Hove Museums Collection, East Sussex. UK
- Yorkshire Crafts Centre Collection, North East. UK