If it is 20 years since the last such tapestry gathering, I can hardly believe my luck that I live in Canberra and that I developed an interest in tapestry in recent years. I was introduced to tapestry by Valerie Kirk in 2002 and more recently I have completed some units of the Diploma of Art (Tapestry) from South West TAFE in Warrnambool.
Sometime ago I acquired a second hand copy of the ‘World Weavers Wall’ and I continue to be inspired by these works. Although I felt uncertain about submitting my work, I very much wanted to be part of the Land exhibition because I could imagine something similar to the ‘World Weavers Wall’. It was an amazing experience to have a tapestry hanging in the same exhibition as so many important and experienced tapestry artists from all over the world. (My tapestry hung proudly beside Kirsten Glasbrook’s!) How can I describe simultaneous feelings like being inspired, intimidated, excited, overwhelmed and incredibly humbled by the sum total of experience represented in one place.
During April with our stunning display of autumn leaves in Canberra I found a gardening column in the local paper headed ‘Autumn a tapestry of colour’. Surely this sums up the feast of tapestry we were treated to when the garden gates of tapestry heaven were opened and we were able to listen to all the words of wisdom and mingle and play for a short time with so many of the world’s tapestry gurus.
Thank you to everyone who participated and very special thank yous'
• to Valerie for making it happen and especially for her attention to all the finer details (even a comprehensive summary);
• to the staff and others from the Textiles workshop for their backup and support (especially the yummy lunches and nice coffee and cakes);
• to all the gurus, the speakers and tutors, who gave generously of their skills and knowledge;
• to everyone who contributed in any way to the feast of exhibitions;
• to Paul Cooper for documenting the Land exhibition and setting up Valerie’s Gallery online;
• to Belinda Jessup for giving everyone ongoing access to papers and information through the blog.
Tapestry 2008 was truly awe-inspiring.Anne Peters