Thursday, 19 January 2012

First of all - Happy New Year!

The Genius of Jennifer Collier!

Towards the end of last year I attended two workshops at Jennifer's studio - Unit 12 in Stafford.

The first was with Jen making gloves and clothes - we learnt lots of methods and made examples to take home.  I still have to finish most of my work and will post it when done. It was a fabulous, action packed workshop and very inspiring.  

Whilst there I took a lot of pictures of Jen's work:

the shoes on the right are my all time favourite, the writing on the postcard is highlighted with stitching, loose threads left dangling - I think they have a poetic quality.

When I first saw a picture of Jen's more recent sculptural pieces I first thought she had covered actual objects as they look so realistic!   Its fascinating that with relatively humble materials she is able to make such amazingly realistic sculptures, all made from recycled paper and cardboard!  - I soooo want a camera! 

I believe I could almost shoot a film with this Super 8!

Also loved the typewriter .....................

and the telephone ................

and the sewing machine .................

 and the teaset .....................
I think what amazes me most about them is the way they are stitched together and even the most complex joints and the way she incorporates her papers - the sewing machine is a dress pattern and instruction leaflet, the phone is some sort of directory and the typewriter is a typing manual. Genius!

It was the first time I'd seen Jen's Lampshades, I was bewitched!  Luckily, my Mum offered to buy me one of Jennifer's large standard lampshades for Christmas!  Its similar to the one below and will hang in my studio at home (when I start work on my sitting room later this year).

Jennifer is not only talented but an enthusiastic and generous teacher who very happily shares her methods and gives advice.  The Studio and gallery space is beautiful.  The workshops are a real joy, the atmosphere is relaxed and friendly and the variety is great. And there's always a cake! Added to which for me it just an hour away from home and most of the workshops are on Saturdays so its a great way to try new things and a fabulous day out.  

Four other artists have also got a space at Unit Twelve which means its also a shopping opportunity and a chance to meet the makers!   Check out details of this years workshops on

More soon about the Ellie Evans workshop at Unit Twelve.

Comments always welcome!

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