Winter Solstice – precious daylight and an honoured long night… A time to think of peace and connection, the rhythm of our world, and wishes and hopes and the strength of togetherness …
Solace – a project by India Knight
Have a look at this post by India Knight
Is it fluttering there still, my pennant – together entwined with others from around the world and gently moving in the breeze? I look out across the sky tonight …
(..thin cloth from an almost exhausted indigo dye bath embroidered with a single word in french knots – a stitch which for me which is about my language to represent prayers / thoughts)
White Withies at Nature in Art from Susi Bancroft on Vimeo.
Try to catch a glimpse of the little white butterfly! https://vimeo.com/137697426
Woad prayer flags at Nature in Art from Susi Bancroft on Vimeo. https://vimeo.com/137697742
The woad is fading as it drifts into the atmosphere in the sun, rain and wind…
Inside Out – the Brunel Broderers Exhibition for 2015 at Nature in Art
My Outside work…
In the garden the white withies stand tall as natural guardians – a thread wrapped around the slender top of each…
The turmeric and tea prayer flags … sending out messages of peace and hope..
The woad fading to palest blue in the rain and wind …
Some little film clips to follow soon… and a post about the inside work too!
The scent from the petals is musky and deep now – the petals a little more brittle to stitch, the colour intense. I wonder how many French knots that will make – each a tiny wish
Will the perfume drift into the air mingled with peace wishes?
The film is made and it is time to share it and talk a little about my approach to my film making..
I want to capture and share what I call ‘ephemeral fragments’ – seeing a flowering bluebell wood is, for me, a truly magical breath-taking experience which is all the more precious because it lasts for so little time. I wanted the prayer flags to become, for a few moments, an integral part of such beauty and to send out their messages of peace drifting through that atmosphere.
My film-making processes are simple. I strongly remember a special family gathering in Canada with my grandparents and all the family when I was 4 (the week of my 5th birthday) and the home-made cine films we watched together – the laughter, the comments, the stories – and the projector, the screen, the spools of film (at one point spilling onto the floor) …
I like the raw presence when I work of evidence of me behind the camera – the slightly shaky quality that I as an amateur bring – it is reminiscent of those cine films.
So – here it is. It will be part of the Brunel Broderers Exhibition Inside Out at Nature in Art from 11 – 31 August (though not available to view from Thursday 20th and starting again on Tuesday 25th)
Prayer Flags in a Bluebell Wood
PS – Click on HD for best quality!
Working on a prayer flag at Walcot Chapel. Torn strips of turmeric and tea dyed silk organza hand stitched with french knots
In my stitch language french knots are thoughts – like a prayer bead felt between the fingers.
The flags – and there are now almost 100 including the blue woad ones – are stitched onto withies – so pliable and supple dancing in the breeze
We were brought a beautiful bunch of flowers including roses which filled the air with scent – what a gift to bring! And so – as the petals gently drifted onto the tablecloth I gathered them to stitch.
A handful of petals..
Drifting in the breeze – https://vimeo.com/131747643
rose petal prayer flag from Susi Bancroft on Vimeo.
This week a little flag in a posy with roses and rosemary – remembrance
The 9 prayer flag pieces at Walcot Chapel last week will be on show indoors at Nature in Art in August (11th – 31st)… I experimented with framing them floating from wax backing pieces. I poured the hot beeswax onto scrim for some extra strength. The beeswax is chosen for the relationship in the work to protecting bees
The backing cloth from here I dyed with woad – gently squeezing the cloth so that there is a little faint white in places – like clouds in the sky.
Here is a little clip of film of it drying – woad drying in the breeze
And then – the golden yellow thread turned green from the dye bath, so I am adding more french knots. Last week it floated against the window of the chapel and I stood to stitch it, glancing through the cloth to the birds in the chapel garden
Meanwhile I am nearly up to 100 flags on withies for outside…
More of those later this week!
My first experience of woad dye – breathtaking as the cloth emerged into the air and transformed into this ethereal blue (from The Woad Centre)
Drying gently in the sunshine
This cloth was dyed for my prayer flags work – of which more to come!
Light as a cloud – delving for scrim I found some silk/cotton for a backing cloth for the prayer flags
Washed in lavender-soaped water and wafting on the line it was delicate, translucent and with such sensitivity to the slightest movement in the breeze… moved by a breath..
Torn into 3, seamed with an open back stitch and now french knots… I shall try wax on the scrap I kept back… an open mind
I thought I had lost one of the 9 today – laid out on this cloth – and, turning to look yet again, there it was, floating on another – the consternation caused me to think what is embodied in these little pieces
The 9th and last prayer flag for my inside piece for the Brunel Broderers Exhibition ‘Inside Out’ at Nature in Art
So now an experiment – I am going to try to caste a beeswax backing piece on which to pin the 9 flags in a 9 patch. Have decided to use scrim as a base to strengthen it and see how it goes. The work uses embroidery stitches as a language for peace (all the prayer flag posts on here talk more about this – will go through the posts and add a tag!)
Why wax? Bees have been a constant source of natural world inspiration threading through the timeline of the work, and my attention has been drawn back time and again to thinking of how to protect them. I am currently enjoying having a go at the Friends of the Earth Bee Count
Meanwhile, for outside, I am working at 200 flags for the grounds…. more of this to come in various posts – about what stitch I settled on and why, what natural dyes I have tried, meditative stitch, and another ‘inside’ piece – the filming of them in a bluebell wood – all will come together for the show and appear as glimpses on here over the coming weeks