Angela’s work celebrates the tactile and explores the properties, qualities and tensions of emotional and physical intimacy.
I am a lecturer, researcher and maker. My work celebrates the tactile and explores the properties, qualities and tensions of emotional and physical intimacy. It is very ‘hands on’ and particularly concerned with making the implicit – or tacit – explicit. Oversized and overstuffed cloth scissors, flaccid latex knitting needles, raw eggs carried in hand knitted pouches, knitted babies, nose warmers and cashmere fingertips. Play and experiment are important to my practice and I believe that the process of making is in and of itself a valuable outcome.
My ‘Maker in Residence’ project with the Florence Nightingale Faculty of Nursing and Midwifery at King’s College, London explored parallels between nursing practice and textile making. Out of an intuitive beginning – that we are both engaged in acts of regeneration and repair, of making good but not always perfect – grew three main projects: ‘Being Intimate’, a quilting bee with midwifery students and staff, where a quilt made from our underwear enabled reflective practice and discussion on what it means to be a midwife; ‘Patching Up’, where I helped individual students and staff with visible repairs of cherished objects, and ‘Little Tin of Resilience’ a project exploring how we make or craft ourselves as resilient. I delivered workshops in bookbinding, crochet and knitting, and an interactive teaching seminar ‘Hooking Narrative’, where crochet was used to explore themes of personal narrative, storytelling and connection.
Working with the nurses and midwives has enhanced my understanding of reflective practice and also introduced me to new techniques of repair, some of which, like the instrument suturing techniques used by midwives, I am developing in my practice. Although the residency is complete, I continue to process the parallels, points of convergence and differences in my work and plan to extend this newly acquired knowledge into other care settings.