Drawings of lace look 'real'

PUBLISHED: 13:51 07 October 2008 | UPDATED: 22:25 15 June 2010

USING a technique that defies technology and embraces imperfections inherent in traditional hand-made lace, artist Teresa Whitfield has managed to create images that also deceive the eye.

USING a technique that defies technology and embraces imperfections inherent in traditional hand-made lace, artist Teresa Whitfield has managed to create images that also deceive the eye.Her stunning collection of works, currently on display at the Thelma Hulbert Gallery, in Honiton, appear in such a way that one could expect to lift them off their mounts. They are tangible from every angle. They look 'real'; like the genuine articles they imitate.Ms Whitfield has used white ink, through the finest of tools, to replicate, step-by-step, in every painstaking detail, how items of lace are made.Her drawings are based on real artefacts, including cuffs, collars and bibs."Through the accuracy of the reproductions, I hope to provoke questions about authorship and originality, but also to confound the viewer by producing images which occupy an unusual space between the drawing of an object and the recreation of it in a different medium," she says."I am interested in exploring, through my work, what lace tells us about the social history of women and I am currently making work about the symbolic role of lace in women's clothing."In the last two years, I have photographed and then made drawings from lace in the archives of the Victoria and Albert Museum, Bath Museum of Costume, the royal Albert Memorial Museum, in Exeter, and Worthing Museum."Gallery curator Angela Blackwell, who has received praise for her innovative and sometimes highbrow exhibitions, has arranged for the display to be on show until Saturday, October 25.An activity day will take place at the gallery on Saturday, October 11, from 10.30am to 3.30pm.Artists will be at the gallery to lead lace-themed drawing activities inspired by Ms Whitfield's work. The Big Draw event is aimed at people of all ages, but children under the age of 12 must be accompanied by an adult.Shelley Tobin and Paula Martin, who are assistant curators of costume and textiles at the Royal Albert Memorial Museum. In Exeter, will give a talk at 7pm on Thursday, October 16.Honiton Lace expert Pat Perryman, whose work is highly regarded the world over, will talk about the collection of lace held at Allhallows Museum, Honiton, from 7pm on Thursday, October 23. The talk will take place at the gallery.Entry to the Thelma Hulbert Gallery is free. Visitors are welcome Wednesday to Saturday from 10am to 4pm.


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