Friday, March 6, 2015

International Women's Day 2015 - Newcastle

Some of the fabric tiles with the small drawing of Elsie Randall's design for the entire mosaic. 
Newcastle’s Timeless Textiles Gallery will mark International Women’s Day on 8  March with an innovative and collaborative exhibition – Letting Go – which will include the placement of a large-scale art installation outside the Lock-up Gallery and Curve Gallery, Hunter Street , Newcastle East. 

The installation, a 72-square metre fabric mosaic designed by local Aboriginal elder and artist Elsie Randal, will be placed on the footpath outside the historical gaol to symbolise the need for Australians, and people from other nations, to cleanse and heal historical pain.

The Letting Go installation is inspired by a community ritual held in a small Italian village each year, where townsfolk colour bark chips and scatter them in the square. A respected community elder then leads a walk through the chips, scattering them as a symbol of cleansing and letting go of old enmities.

Over 350 people have created approximately 1800 fabric tiles.. printing, mark-making, stitching and felting, by attending workshops, run by local fibre artists Naomi Wild, Wilma Simmons and Ruth Spence.  NCEATA- Newcastle Creativ e Embroiderers and Textiles Artists- have  also spent many hours stitching creating part of the design.

“Layers of stories have emerged as people explore their creative expression in the workshops,” Anne said. “Individual life experiences, a strong local sense of place and a collective of thoughts on the global issues facing women today have all been represented by group members.”

The resulting works will be on exhibition for a walk-through on Sunday, 8 March as part of the Letting Go International Women’s Day celebration at 2pm. Individuals, families and community groups are invited to participate in Letting Go – collectively, creatively and meaningfully. The walk with be led by Lord Major, Nuatali Nelmes and Elsie Randall.

NCEATA working on the project 

Lisa from Curve Gallery assembling part of the installation. 

A sample of the 1800 + fabric tiles. 
If you live in or near Newcastle NSW, I hope to see you at our International Women's Day art  event. Celebrate the achievements of women all around the world. Protect  and the support the women and girls who are still living in the shadows of others in fear.   Make it Happen !  Happy International Women's Day to all! 
Make It Happen : IWD theme 2015. 
PS Watch this blog space for photos of  Sunday's event. - 8 March : 2pm

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