Hallowed  Ground

Hallowed Ground

1. Rio Pescado Stubfoot Toad

For the last 5 years I have been in the habit of producing a collection of work each year according to my own brief. Usually this is an idea that forms within the completion of the previous year and then I have to fight with myself to abandon that one and get on with the new.

And so it was as last year’s Remembrance Day for Lost Species exhibition was being hung that I had begun my Hallowed Ground project.

2. Sawfish

This idea hadn’t come to me fully formed and I’d had to do a lot of casting around for the inspiration to sort of glue together. Part of my process was to research ways that other cultures mark their grief, their death customs. This had led me to discover the practice of Sky Burial and Air Sacrifice.

3. Pygmy Three-Toed Sloth

Both practices are types of excarnation whereby the corpse is placed outside to be exposed to the elements and scavenging animals. In the Mongolian practice, I discovered the specific ritual of outlining the body with stones, and when the body has been completely regenerated back into the natural world, the space within the stones has become a sacred space.

4. Seychelles Sheath-Tailed Bat

I found this very moving. Considering this concept and applying it to the world’s most critically endangered species made me think about how their habitats have become so rarefied and equally as threatened as to require reverence.

The idea of a negative space as an artistic device representing an extremely special, precious and rare place.

5. Geometric Tortoise

I began to research animals on the IUCN Redlist that are classified as Critically Endangered but that also have severely threatened habitats.

My intention was to create a representation of their home that was both faithful and fantastical. A grave and an afterlife. A place that draws the viewer in to explore, hopefully to delight, and then to ask questions to discover the story of this rare and absent friend.

6. Gooty Tarantula

1. The Rio Pescado Stubfoot Toad

The Rio Pescado Stubfoot toad is so critically endangered that it may already be extinct. It lives in a tiny scrap of Ecuadorian lowland forest that is dwindling away, and lives nowhere else. Indeed, it’s loss of habitat due to agriculture, logging and pollution is the main threat to its existence. One third of all frogs and toads are on the verge of extinction, suffering an 80% loss in the last 3 decades.

2. Sawfish

The large tooth sawfish is one of the rarest fish in the world, and a living dinosaur, existing for 60 million years at least. Degradation of their preferred habitat of shallow coastal estuaries has removed them from 95% of their historical range. The sawfish has suffered a population decline of 80% since the ‘60s.

3. Pygmy Three-Toed Sloth

The Pygmy three-toed sloth is found only in a tiny area of red mangrove forest on Isla Escudo de Veraguas, Panama. Despite being an uninhabited island and designated a protected landscape, a number of domestic and international efforts have been mounted to develop tourism on the island. In addition, their mangrove habitat is also threatened, with one in six species facing extinction.

4. Seychelles Sheath-Tailed Bat

One of the world’s rarest mammals, only found on the Seychelles islands of Silhouette and Mahe, there are estimated only 30-100 individuals remaining. Roosting in granite boulder caves, an introduced invasive species of vine block the cave entrances and reduce insect availability, already in decline due to pesticide use.

5. Geometric Tortoise

A very small and beautiful tortoise only found in the Cape Floral Kingdom of South Africa. In fact, this is the only species in this series classed as Endangered (not Critically), however destruction of more than 90% of its habitat, an extraordinarily botanically diverse area, itself classed critically endangered as well as ‘100% irreplaceable’, earned its place.

6. Gooty Tarantula

This otherworldly electric blue arachnid only exists in the dry deciduous forest of Andhra Pradesh, India. Its habitat is rapidly degrading due to logging and firewood harvesting. Population size is unknown but the combination of a tiny natural range and pressure from illegal pet trade paints a sad picture.

NEW! Mother Eagle Textile Art Boxes launch on 1st September

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Those of you who follow me on Instagram will probably already know that after months of work I am releasing the first in a series of Textile Art Boxes by Mother Eagle. Yes they are embroidery kits, but they’re hopefully offering you a little bit more than that, hence why I’m calling them Art Boxes.

Because embroidery is art. Because the kits are about technique focus. And because first and foremost I am an artist and I’m bringing you the same art, in kit form, as I do for galleries and shows in my art practice.

How so? Well, several months ago I put a shout out on Instagram to anyone who was up for helping me with some market research so I could really dig into what you would want in a Mother Eagle version.What I learned is what I’ve produced here, so read on for more details, and how you can buy one!

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Why the Stag Beetle?

It was important to me that this project line up with my artistic voice in my normal practice. To wit,  that I would be telling stories of lost and endangered species. The stag beetle is a beautiful and iconic beetle that is now extinct in most parts of Britain and Europe, and is certainly endangered elsewhere.

This design invites you to experiment with embellishment, with the added challenge of some basic goldwork (using coloured metal threads). With a little patience and care, I believe everyone can create this design, no matter their embroidery experience.

The first key point I want to highlight about these boxes is that there is no plastic packaging included whatsoever. Sequins are plastic, so I will make that distinction! But as far as throwaway or single use elements in this design, it is 100% plastic free. 

The other key aspect of these boxes is that I have included a charity donation with each purchase. As I hope these kits will make my art and design more accessible to a wider audience than my main practice does, I felt strongly that they should support the real work going on to support endangered species. With this design, £1 from every box sold will go to The People’s Trust for Endangered Species, a small UK charity with a specific stag beetle campaign. Future designs will make similar pledges to appropriate causes.

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What do you get in the kit?

• 6″ Embroidery hoop
• 10″ square piece of cotton fabric
• Black felt
• 2 needles
• Gutermann black cotton thread
• All the professional-quality beads, sequins and special threads you’ll need
• 30-page fully-illustrated instruction booklet, full of my Pro-Tips for getting that extra polish
• Full colour Stag Beetle trading card with info on this amazing and endangered species

But wait there’s more!

You’ll also get my illustrated guide to mounting your work like a pro – FREE!

The only thing you don’t get are embroidery scissors, and I also *highly* recommend a seat frame or barrel clamp to hold your provided frame, or to use instead. If you don’t have one, or can’t source one, working at a table where you can set your hoop down will work okay.

The Textile Art Box costs £30 and can be bought here in my new Big Cartel store. Pre-sale opens on 1st September.

What does pre-sale mean?

Orders placed at pre-sale won’t be shipped until mid-October (I’m going on holiday!) BUT in return for your patience, I’m giving you FREE worldwide shipping AND doubling the donation to charity. After the pre-sale ends, shipping will be charged and the donation returns to normal.

So don’t wait!

Natural Fibres Solo Show Opens this Thursday

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Hello friends and followers.

Please join me this Thursday for the Private View of my first solo show, Natural Fibres.

The show will feature my entire body of work since 2015 – the year I started working big! This is such an exciting event for me, to see all my work hanging together in one place.

Plus, I will be showing 5 brand new pieces from my current series Hallowed Ground.

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But wait, there’s more!

In honour of this special occasion, I have had some amazing prints made of my three most popular pieces from the Extinct Icons series. If you follow me on Instagram or Facebook (if you aren’t, you should, it’s great) then you’ll already have seen the little videos I’ve posted of each one available. So head on over there and have a look.

All sales of prints will be handled by the gallery, and can be shipped worldwide.

Here’s what you can expect:
Giclee art print on archival 330gsm Somerset velvet stock with hand torn edges.
My unique logo stamp on reverse.
Glow in the dark hand embroidered initials. Each hand embellished by me.

There’s 2 of The Witch of Saint Kilda (all posters of this piece are sold out), 2 of Saint Celia, and 1 of Saint Benjamin (1 has sold already!). I also have 1 of each print available framed, which can be shipped to UK locations. I know you’d expect me to say this, but I very very rarely make prints, and when I received these I was so impressed with the quality. They look like they’re 3-dimensional, the image is so crisp.

Hope to see you there!

Upcoming Exhibitions

Upcoming Exhibitions

Hello friends old and new.

Just a quick update to let you know that a little selection of my work will be on show as part of Worthing Artist’s Open Houses, from this Saturday all weekend and next weekend 30th/1st.

There’s a few pieces from each series – Ugly Gods, Ritual Burials and Extinct Icons, as well as some little embroidered works and £5 posters! Plus loads of other cool art at the venue as well as across Worthing on the Art Trail!

Find me at Venue 17, 3 School Yard, Grafton Road

Also a heads up that I am having a solo show in Brighton, at Brush in August.

‘Natural Fibres’ will include a selection of my work from the last 5 years, as well as premier several brand new pieces. There will also be a very limited number of signed giclee prints from the Extinct Icons series, each individually hand finished by me.

The private view is at 7pm on 9th August – follow the event via Facebook here.

I promise I’ll post new work here soon! If you’re not already, follow me on Instagram for all my current works in progress!

Extinct Icons & Ritual Burials – Exhibition Pics

Extinct Icons & Ritual Burials – Exhibition Pics

O N C A exhibition 'Extinct Icons and Ritual Burials'

Hello friends,

As always I am late with the update but I wanted to share some images from my exhibition at the end of last year. The whole process of working with the team at ONCA was a pleasure and privilege and realising this exhibition was a career highlight. All images credit to Andrew O Hara.

Enjoy!

O N C A exhibition 'Extinct Icons and Ritual Burials'

O N C A exhibition 'Extinct Icons and Ritual Burials'
O N C A exhibition: ‘Extinct Icons and Ritual Burials’

Hihi Door by Hannah Battershell

O N C A exhibition 'Extinct Icons and Ritual Burials'
O N C A exhibition: ‘Extinct Icons and Ritual Burials’

O N C A exhibition 'Extinct Icons and Ritual Burials'
O N C A exhibition: ‘Extinct Icons and Ritual Burials’

O N C A exhibition 'Extinct Icons and Ritual Burials'
O N C A exhibition: ‘Extinct Icons and Ritual Burials’

O N C A exhibition 'Extinct Icons and Ritual Burials'
O N C A exhibition: ‘Extinct Icons and Ritual Burials’

O N C A exhibition 'Extinct Icons and Ritual Burials'
O N C A exhibition: ‘Extinct Icons and Ritual Burials’

O N C A exhibition 'Extinct Icons and Ritual Burials'
O N C A exhibition: ‘Extinct Icons and Ritual Burials’

O N C A exhibition 'Extinct Icons and Ritual Burials'
O N C A exhibition: ‘Extinct Icons and Ritual Burials’

O N C A exhibition 'Extinct Icons and Ritual Burials'
O N C A exhibition: ‘Extinct Icons and Ritual Burials’

O N C A exhibition 'Extinct Icons and Ritual Burials'
O N C A exhibition: ‘Extinct Icons and Ritual Burials’

O N C A exhibition 'Extinct Icons and Ritual Burials'
O N C A exhibition: ‘Extinct Icons and Ritual Burials’

From the Private view:

O N C A Extinct Icons & Ritual Burials, 23rd Nov 2017
O N C A Extinct Icons & Ritual Burials, 23rd Nov 2017

O N C A Extinct Icons & Ritual Burials, 23rd Nov 2017
O N C A Extinct Icons & Ritual Burials, 23rd Nov 2017

O N C A Extinct Icons & Ritual Burials, 23rd Nov 2017
O N C A Extinct Icons & Ritual Burials, 23rd Nov 2017

O N C A Extinct Icons & Ritual Burials, 23rd Nov 2017
O N C A Extinct Icons & Ritual Burials, 23rd Nov 2017