I embroider all of the pieces displayed on this site personally by hand.
Embroidery is the handicraft of decorating fabric or other materials with needle and thread. As an art its roots can be traced back as early a the 3rd Century BCE – and it has changed very little over thousands of years. Unlike other art forms, the techniques and materials used by embroiderers have not developed or advanced with the passing years – it is a timeless medium.
The association of women with embroidery is unbreakable and politically fraught. Seen as a ‘woman’s skill’, historically most forms of needlework have been considered domestic and therefore not ‘artistic’. This project aims to reclaim embroidery as a form of creative expression, which millions of women throughout history have taken part in.
The aim of the project is to present a portrait of every single woman on the list. In cases where there are no existing images of a specific woman (a particular problem when dealing with women in the classical world) I attempt to look at contemporary artwork of women at that time e.g. Greek statues and vase paintings, Egyptian and Babylonian wall carvings.
I use embroidery floss, calico and a variety of beads made from glass, plastic and metal. Each embroidery takes approximately 3 hours to complete from start to finish.