We are giving you ample warning - put September aside for a shibori silk session with pattern doyenne Joanna Fowles. She will be joining us for an artist's residency from September 17th-23rd and host a one day shibori silk scarf workshop while she is here that is already poised to sell out.Jo is a British born Sydney based textile designer and digital crafter. Her work is primarily process driven with a focus on hand elements and mixed media. With a playful approach she experiments with large-scale mark making, wood, paint, dye, shibori, photography and screen-printing techniques to produce abstract geometric digital craft designs. Her fascination with fabric has led her along the path of stylist, screen printer and textile designer working in both fashion and homewares. She has sold and exhibited her work internationally. Her work has featured on trend forecasting site WGSN and has sold to clients such as Louis Vuitton Paris.
Tell us a little bit about yourself. I've had a fascination with fabric and pattern ever since I can remember. I left London for Sydney in 1998 with the intention of a short visit. A few months turned into eight years. I worked in creative fields as fashion editor and stylist before deciding to change tack follow my passion and do an intensive year long screen printing course at TAFE. That changed my focus entirely to fabric and creating pattern on cloth. After graduating I set up a small screen printing studio with another graduate and created soft furnishings label Perry & Fowles. We printed everything ourselves and it was great fun. After several years I returned to London to work an study textile design at Chelsea college of art in London. My focus shifted towards more digital applications within textiles with the freedom to explore and develop my work conceptually. I returned to Australia only last year for love and I am so so happy to be back here again. I share a lovely warehouse studio space with other designers, teach and work to commission.
Where do you draw inspiration from? The list is very long, so much inspires me and my work. Inspiration often comes from looking intently, finding the bits that excite me and adapting those elements to suit my own aesthetic. Inspiration can come from a building, place, artist or the environment around me. I love traditional textiles from trips I've made to Africa and India. Artists who's work I regularly return to for inspiration include Yayoi Kusama for her obsessive mark making, Louise Borgeouis for her beautiful textile art collection I saw in London two years ago Cy Twombly for his beautiful mark making and beautiful colour palettes and Ellsworth Kelly for his collages. Geometric pattern is something I return to again and again, I never get tired of it. I think my favourite building must be the Alhambra Palace in Grenada Spain. The geometrics in there blew my mind. I also go through phases of being blog obsessed, so obsessed I sometimes have to limit my time on the internet so I can get my work done. There is so much amazing stuff out there! Instagram is another favourite way to keep a visual online diary and now I've discovered pinterest too for scrapbooking online inspiration. I love to display all my imagery to group it and arrange it and create inspiration walls in my studio which I feed from and refer to to inform my designs.
What is that people would expect to gain from your workshop? People who attend the workshop will gain a basic understanding of dyeing fabrics to create beautiful pattern onto silk scarves.
Have a look at Jo's website and her tumblr site....so much beautiful work there. We can't wait to have her mooching around here in September.
Book into her workshop now.