I mainly work with silk, loving its resilience. Warm when it’s cold, cool when it’s hot. Its sensuality to touch and wear. A wonderful palette for colour. Batik (wax-resistant dyeing) is the main process I use : hot wax is first painted on the fabric, before it is dyed by dipping in cold water or by painting on it, with a few alternatives of my own ! I have been working on fabrics on and off since the 1960’s. A sort of light relief after intensely absorbing painting work.
The batik hangings come from drawings that I later developed on sea island cotton. This has become much too expensive to use now, but it was wonderful for holding the many different dyes I used to make a wealth of colour. These hangings were sometimes shown in the dark with lights behind them so they appeared like a stained glass window.
Sometimes I also do mix media hangings, decorative work. Using all sorts of recycled bits and pieces, like thin copper pieces machined on to sheep wool and felt, and many other ideas. Anything possible ! This work, I have also done a lot with children and adults of different ages and abilities in workshops. This picture is right now the only one I have of this kind of work !
DANCING WITH TEXTILES
Recently, Caroline Hands has been working with dancer Alice Labant around a ‘Dancing with Textiles’ performance entitled ‘Current Biopsy’ (2017). It follows a first version of the project called ‘Journeying’ (2016). Find out more on this page with a video of the performance.