view of Womenfolk page

The inspiration and point of contact for this panel is Womenfolk a gathering place for women. Womenfolk is a site maintained by Anne Johnson. She has included women's stories, poetry and visual arts and her ideas about home making. In an email in which we spoke about the craft of home making and the craft of building web pages she commented

"In a way it is a new craft, one that weaves and pieces and embroiders an image that is made with software & electronics rather than something you can hold and feel. I've been working on a quilt using fabrics and a pattern from about 1860 to 1875. Some fabrics are reproductions and some are simply modern fabrics that have the look of that period. As I have been working the thought occurred to me again and again how much designing a new web page is like quilting. So many steps; the overall plan in one's mind, the trying of different fabrics (backgrounds, graphics), the arranging and rearranging, the final touches. The big difference it you don't have to spend tedious time ripping out what didn't work :-). A click of the key and you have made the desired changes."

This is part of a body of work which is an exploration into how women are representing themselves on the World Wide Web, and the connection between 'homemaking' and 'home page'. Embroidery is a culturally-loaded textile art often associated with gender, the domestic, memory or nostalgia. I use stitchery to seduce and draw the viewer in. The desire to touch a textile and the need to connect with the work in a physical sense is a metaphor for the internet's promise of community.

To produce this image, screen shots from the Anne's home pages were taken, then combined and manipulated in Photoshop. The image was then printed on cotton fabric using a Colour Style Writer 2400. To this print I added stitchery using various hand dyed threads of cotton, silk, and wool.

The exhibition "Playing False" was held in the Craft ACT Gallery, Canberra, Australia, between the 3rd of September 1997 and the 21st September 1997.

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