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My Work is Textile-based, Which Universally Connects all Cultures. Catherine Buddle interviewed by Klimt02

Interview  /  Artists
Published: 28.04.2020
Catherine Buddle Catherine Buddle
Author:
Klimt02
Edited by:
Klimt02
Edited at:
Barcelona
Edited on:
2020
Catherine Buddle. Brooch: Empty Vessel, 2007. Rayon and lame, gold and silver mi-fin threads. 9 x 3 x 3 cm. Photo by: Grant Hancock. Catherine Buddle
Brooch: Empty Vessel, 2007
Rayon and lame, gold and silver mi-fin threads
9 x 3 x 3 cm
Photo by: Grant Hancock
© By the author. Read Klimt02.net Copyright.

Intro
When starting a new piece, I have an idea of the final shape and a numerical sequence to follow. Neither are strictly adhered to and the gauge and composition of the thread I select from my collection will influence the form to some degree, so the form evolves as the work progresses.
What's local and universal in your artistic work?
Apart from some pieces with handmade silver brooch backs by local jewellers, my work is textile-based, which universally connects all cultures.
Existentially, a universe can be found in a whorl, in a seed, in a cocoon, in a stitch, and I create my pieces with this in mind, using universal numerical sequences as a guide.


What do you expect when you show your work to the public, for example, with an exhibition?
I don’t have expectations when exhibiting work – just the desire that the audience can connect to the work in some intuitive way. An artist talk or supporting material are helpful to explain my concepts and approach, the hours of work that goes into each piece, stitch by stitch, together with the provenance of the threads I use, most of which were hand made.


Catherine Buddle, Brooch: Anemone, 2019, Antique silk and silver passementerie thread, foil sequins, 925 brooch back, 3 x 8 x 7 cm, Photo by Grant Hancock


How important is handmade for you in your development, and what role does technology play in your development?
The handmade is everything in my work. Many of the threads I use were also made by hand – so many layers. My practice is quiet, slow, contemplative and low-tech. My equipment consists of a handmade wooden swift for reeling skeins of thread, 0.4mm crochet hooks, sewing needles – and my hands.


When you start making a new piece, what is your process? How much of it is a pre-formulated plan and how much do you let the material spontaneity lead you?
My sculptural vessels are malleable; their shape can be manipulated. When starting a new piece, I have an idea of the final shape and a numerical sequence to follow. Neither are strictly adhered to and the gauge and composition of the thread I select from my collection will influence the form to some degree, so the form evolves as the work progresses.   


Catherine Buddle, Brooch: Chrysalis, 2019, Silver mi-fin thread, silk thread, 925 brooch back, 4.5 x 4.5 x 5 cm, Photo by Grant Hancock


Are there any other areas besides the jewels present in your work?
I work with textiles and paper, stitching and embroidering, and am a graphic designer.


How important is wearability in contemporary jewellery? And in your pieces?
I see my work as portable sculpture, so the wearability is important if they are to be displayed successfully. Some of my work has been acquired, as single pieces and as collections, purely for their sculptural form with no intention of wearing them.


The last work, book, film, city that moved me was...
I listen to podcasts and audiobooks while I stitch. Emund de Waal’s The White Road has been a welcome companion and deepened my appreciation of Kirsten Coelho’s 2018 Adelaide Biennale exhibition Transfigured Night which moved me profoundly.


What/who is the biggest influence in your career?
My past experience as a laboratory assistant and learning to use a microscope and camera lucida underpin my interest in biology and the minutiae.


Which piece or job gave you the most satisfaction?
I was invited to hold a salon show in Sydney, an immensely appreciated opportunity to showcase my work to a select group of collectors, many having a background or interest in textiles.


Catherine Buddle, Body piece: Invincible Suit, 2010, Polyethelyne overall, hand-cut polyethelyne thread, overprinted text on paper, 125 x 60 x 15 cm, Photo by Grant Hancock


What is your source to get information?
I’m informed by books, exhibitions, discussions with friends and colleagues, fossicking in antique shops and in nature, and disappearing down the rabbit hole of the internet.


Considering the experiences you have had over the years - if you could go back and give yourself a piece of advice for the start-up phase, what would that be?
Follow your heart, trust your instincts.


Can you describe your personality in three words and your work in three words?
Me: reflective, fastidious, with an eye for detail, and my work: unique, fluid and organic.
 
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