Something about fibre art is particularly enticing: Phillida Hargreaves, some of whose work is on display at Grace Hall from now until the end of summer, says texture was what first drew her to fabric as an art medium.
Hargreaves spoke Sunday afternoon to a fascinated audience of over thirty people who came to see her work and hear her talk to them about it.
“With fibre art,” she said, “you learn to use a multitude of techniques: stitching, dyeing, knitting, cutting, drawing, printing, felting and painting, to name a few.” She described how the very thing some thought of as daunting — the huge amount of time and stitching required to create some of her pictures — could be soothing and relaxing with its calm repetition that freed up the mind to daydream. “And if you don’t like what you’ve done, fibre art can always be changed. You can pick out a line of stitching and start over with another colour. Or cut it up and use bits in something else!”
Much of Hargreaves’ work is landscape based, inspired by travels in the Arctic, New Zealand and Morocco. It features textures of rocks, buildings, trees and water, and the lure of light shining through narrow spaces. One small narrative piece recalls the daily letters her grandfather wrote to her grandmother when he was on the battlefield in WWI, every letter beginning with the words, “My dear old girl”, seldom mentioning the horrors he was living through.
The pictures can be viewed Monday - Friday, whenever the hall is not in use: either phone SFCSC (613 376-6477) or drop by, using the side door. 4295 Stage Coach Road, Sydenham: just up the hill from the flashing light.