I have long admired and found fascinating the work of ‘feminist artists’ such as Shelley Goldsmith who have exploited textiles as their medium of choice to communicate their ideology. Though I don’t feel comfortable describing them as feminist. Shelley Goldsmiths work is about how emotional states and memories can remain within a garment and her work explores ways of making these visible again. I don’t feel she is exploring particularly feminist issues she happens to be female and use a medium particularly associated with women.
Susie Freeman is another artist I find really interesting, she used textiles as a way of exploring ideas of health and medication. She worked with a family doctor to produce a body of work entitled ‘Pharmacopia’ that explored our ever growing dependence on medication and our acceptance of it.
Within my own work I have found It important to explore ideas and messages that are particularly poignant to me. It is a kind of catharsis as I believe most artist working in this way feel. It doesn’t feel like something I just want to do but more a case of ‘need to do’. Working through ideas in this way helps to make sense of them.