Featured textile artist Cas Holmes: To do different
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Cas Holmes is an artist, teacher and author living in the UK. She trained in painting and photography at the University of Creative Arts, Kent followed by further scholarships studying paper and textiles in Japan and India.Working with textiles and mixed media, she creates textile collages using discarded and ‘found materials’. These are torn, cut, and re-assembled creating translucent layers, which connect drawing, painting and image with cloth and stitch.
“My work is informed by the ‘hidden’ or often overlooked parts of our landscape, the places where our gardens meet the outside spaces.Working with ‘stitch sketching’, I seek to capture a moment or thing before it is gone.
Cas produces artwork and installations for public and private spaces and work on collaborations with galleries and in education both in the UK and beyond.
Her composition is achieved through the internal organisation of verticals and horizontals, leaving a feeling of openness. ‘Iris and Sparrows’ and ‘Madder’, for example, seem to float off the wall, the latter retaining the glow as well as the formality of a Rothko’
Janet Sturge, Natural Histories
Urban/Nature her most recent work was first seen in a the Knitting and Stitching Show at Alexandra Palace and Harrogate, and at Festival of Quilts where she was a guest artist under the invitation of Twistedthread. This work will be touring with new pieces including an exhibition at the Front Room, Beaney House of Art and Knowledge in the Winter of 2013/14. People will be able to continue taking part in Tea-Flora-Tales described below:
Setting off to this year’s Festival of Quilts what I was looking forward to most was catching up with the latest work of the exhibiting textile artists. This year Cas Holmes was the invited guest artist.
Cas is passionate about the environment and her use of recycled and found materials. Her imagery highlights the vulnerability of the wildlife that most of us overlook in our daily lives – the nature that shares our city spaces. Her newest pieces of work had been prompted by the start of this summer’s London Olympics. She remember the walks she’d taken in the Lea Valley before building work had started at the site, where she had stopped to take note of the beauty of the commonplace wildlife such as the dandelions, grasses, birds and moths that she came across. The work is wonderfully delicate and ethereal. Layering fine fabrics, with a subtle use of colour, she creates the atmospheric backgrounds for her hand and machine stitched images, highlighting the fleeting nature of such encounters.
While visitors lingered to admire her work, Cas reinforced the messaging by distributing empty used tea bags, challenging her audience to use them as a starting point for their own stitched pieces of work.
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Cas has written two books:
Connected Cloth: Creating Collaborative Textile Projects is a collaboration with Anne Kelly and is due to be published in Autumn 2013 and is available from Connected Cloth: Creating Collaborative Textile Projects.
The Found Object in Textile Art was published in 2010 and is available from The Found Object in Textile Art.
Up to date information on exhibtions and events can be found on the following links:
Cas Holmes undertakes commissions and is available for talks and workshops.
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15 comments on “Featured textile artist Cas Holmes: To do different”
This interview reflects Cas’s philosophy of her life and connection to textiles. I fully recommend any of her workshops, they will make you question your current view of your work and the reasons behind what you do and even if you don’t move on you will benefit from the experience.
Thankyou for your kind feedback Margaret.
‘Stitch Stories, my third book for Batsford Autumn 2015 has recently been reprinted.
Bought Stitch Stories recently, a treasure, beautiful layout and well used.
Thank you Jenny