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This is an evolving online exhibition, more works will be added as they are completed – check back from time to time.
(22) Deb K Williams - Knots and Constellations
About this Artwork
‘Knots and Constellations’ is a work born out of a process of distillation. My page ‘Some Ensigns of Britain and the Commonwealth’ has been reduced to a single image containing traditional symbols of the sea and sky combined with the practical universality of sailors knots. While the overall sense of navigation remains, the militaristic overtones and the grid layout of the original page have been removed. The image now floats in space much like a vessel on the sea.
The flags featured in ‘Some Ensigns of Britain and the Commonwealth’ have obvious military associations and the notions of ‘The Commonwealth’ suggest British domination and centuries of imperialism. I wished to explore themes of the universality of ancient sea faring where navigation is gleaned from understanding the map of sky and the sail is tethered by an array of knots and the vessel, when necessary, is tethered to the sea bed by an anchor.
I have a multi-discipline art practice that includes installation, drawing, collage and digital photography. My work includes drawings, photographs, diagrams and templates and collections of three-dimensional ‘samples’ and small hand crafted proto-types. My installation work is characterised by the desire to experiment with materials and processes, to use assemblage and collage to create unexpected connections and to use materials that are often mundane, discarded or redundant. I draw upon textile, casting and modelling traditions and incorporate processes such as stitching, incising, puncturing, tessellating, rug making, wrapping, knotting and weaving. Materials include an assortment of papers, felt, cassette and VHS tape, oil, plasticine, salt, sand, threads, cement, rope and mud. Most recently I have created textile works exploring the connection between stitching, weaving and drawing and the contemplative, meditative nature of these activities. This Door to Door project has given me the opportunity to challenge myself to make work from a page that initially didn’t offer me much inspiration!
Deb was provided with the following page from Newnes’ Pictorial Knowledge Encyclopedia:
The story of the world and it’s peoples.
Some Ensigns of Britain and the Commonwealth.