Emma West


Emma is a tile maker whose work in ceramics has evolved into a printmaking process using hand stitched embroidery, fresh plants and porcelain, she works with surface texture to convey detail and uses glazes to emphasize design.

As a former archivist Emma’s interest in manuscripts, photography and botanical illustration pervade the work, the clay taking on an equivalence of paper. The colour palette is largely monochrome but includes inky gradations of blues and greys which create depth and a pictorial effect. Stitches are relatively transient and ephemeral whereas porcelain feels permanent, Emma builds a bridge between the two.

The embroideries are hand stitched, often quite ???messy??? and deliberately loose so that strands fall where they will. A variety of threads and backcloths are used; silk, linen, scrim, calico all create textural depth. An awareness of historical domestic embroidery, darning, patchwork, samplers etc., all feed into the way she stitches.

The work has a peaceful quality. It is illustrative of the everyday and the beauty of the overlooked and incidental, reflecting this makers life, based as she is in a rural studio on the edge of woodland in the Tamar Valley. A favourite quote is from the poet Gerard Manley Hopkins the ???freshness deep down things???; it???s there for us all to share.

Emma is happy to discuss commissions.

Studio visits welcome.

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