Tuesday, 10 March 2009

Beautifully British: Jennifer Collier

I'm resurrecting my Beautifully British series, to showcase more of the talent we have here in the UK. Today's interviewee is artist Jennifer Collier. I've been following her work for several years, especially loving the delicate paper shoes made from sheet music, maps and other recycled papers. From the photos Jennifer sent through for this feature, I have two new favourites; the map suitcase and the What Katy Did apron. What Katy Didis one of my favourite childhood books. I've only just realised, to my delight, that there is a fourth book in the series, Clover.

Thank you Jennifer for taking part in the interview.

Brief bio: Since graduating in 1999 from a traditional Textiles course at Manchester Metropolitan University I have been making and selling my own work, as well as undertaking commissions, residencies and running art workshops. In the 10 years since graduating I have been 'unlearning' and experimenting with my own experimental techniques to create work. I was based in Manchester for the 7 years after graduating, but have been living in Stafford for the past 3 years.

Describe your work: Through methods of weaving, waxing, bonding, fusing, trapping, embedding and stitching I create unusual materials, which are then developed into non- functional garments and shoes. I also produce a range of functional jewellery and head pieces, as well as canvases, cards and badges. Much of the work, such as the dresses and shoes, are non-functional and aims to encourage people to speculate on the value of nature. I enjoy the idea of working with disposable organic materials that are transient in nature, imbuing them with worth and creating something intriguing and of great beauty.

What inspires you? The recycled materials themselves are my main source of inspiration. I generally scour markets, charity shops, fruit and vegetable stalls and £1 shops to find the materials from which I create my work. I tend to find these items, then investigate a way in which they can be reused and transformed.

Describe a perfect day: Getting up late - tea and toast in bed with the Sunday papers (ideally made by my husband, not me!), then going to a flea market or car boot sale to bag some bargains. In the evening sitting doing some hand sewing in front of a good film with a nice glass of red!


Michelle Parks McCourt said...

so creative! i love those paper shoes.

getting stuff done said...

I am with her on the perfect day scenario!

Blair said...

Oh, wow! He work is really beautiful. Those shoes really are a piece of art.

Patchwork Harmony said...

really beautiful work... and that so IS the perfect day... sounds like bliss! :)