Pushing their boundaries: the Southern Highlands Textile and Fibre Network exhibit at BDAS | PHOTOS

TEXTURES: Chris Moore and Jan Nicholls  from the Southern Highlands Textile and Fibre Network, who are exhibiting their latest works at the Bowral Art Gallery from November 10 to 20. Photo: Charli Shield.
TEXTURES: Chris Moore and Jan Nicholls from the Southern Highlands Textile and Fibre Network, who are exhibiting their latest works at the Bowral Art Gallery from November 10 to 20. Photo: Charli Shield.

Quilters, spinners, weavers, knitters, embroiderers, fabric sculptors, paper-makers, felt-makers and milliners will invite the community inside their intricate world of textile and fibre this weekend. 

The Southern Highlands Textile and Fibre Network have worked throughout the year to create pieces for their latest show, Pushing the Boundaries. 

Network director Chris Moore said this year’s exhibition title references the way in which the contributing artists have thought deeply about their craft and broadened themselves creatively. 

“One of the workshops we did with textile artist Glenys Mann really made me think deeply about what I was doing,” Ms Moore said.

“I ended up making a piece about fractured life in contemporary society – anger, domestic violence, all the terrible things we see on the news. And I’ve never done something like that before.”

More than 40 members make up the network, which meets on the third Saturday of each month to talk textiles. 

One exhibiting member, Catherine Leeders, has created a three-part series for the show that explores the degradation of the ocean.

She has used fabrics like felt, cotton and organza, as well as plant material like old man’s beard and gumnuts, and discarded plastic found on her morning walks, to replicate the textured nature of the reef. 

Paul and Annette Brereton, who have both been in the group for 17 years, have produced delicate silk and wool pieces for the exhibition using the shibori technique – the Japanese dyeing and folding method that produces patterns on fabric.

“Everyone does something different,” Ms Moore said. “But we all get along because we share the same love for textiles and materials.”

A portion of the proceeds from the network’s exhibition will go toward the Share the Dignity charity to support homeless women. 

Pushing the Boundaries will be on display at the Bowral Art Gallery from Friday, November 10 until November 20, with the official opening at 1pm on Saturday, November 11 that will be followed by an ‘art to wear parade’.