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  • Writer's pictureChiara

Minor project plan

I've settled on a plan for my minor project. I want to embroider one of the slogans from the 2017 Women's March onto a found textile--found while scouring Op shops for materials.

There are many of these white cloths in most of the Op shops I visited. They are obviously handmade and were once treasured. Now they are sold for a few dollars each. I would like to find out more about these particular whitework patterns because they seem to be a recurring feature in this area. The cloth I have chosen seems to be linen rather than cotton and is already shaped as a vertical rectangle--so it has the form of a banner.

The slogan I have chosen is,

"I can't believe I still need to protest this fucking shit"

It took me a while to accept the "fucking", but I think it's essential to a work that contrasts the finesse of the textile and embroidery with the anger of generations of women who are tired of the patriarchy. My plan is to embroider white on white to emphasise this contrast, and to reference the expectations of purity and the place of textiles in marriage traditions of trousseaux. I will imagine myself as a young woman stitching away under my mother's eye as I prepare for my future... or not! There will definitely be an element of reflecting on women's work in the making of the piece--there are 46 letters to outline.

Harking back to my learnings from Sarah Goffman, here's what I'm incorporating

  • feminism--in particular quoting the words of other women

  • courage--the words are not subtle

  • a focus on materiality

  • playing off the original and the copy--I will be adding to the found textile with similar materials and methods, but changing the meaning of the work in the process

  • using discarded materials and re-appraising their value

  • using materials and methods that are not conventionally "high art"

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