Embroidering Women Stories

My passion for embroidery has no limits, this is why I´m not taking this art in my hands, because of the respect I have for this needlework.

Nevertheless, I collect in a virtual, and preliminary, gallery, the work of some wonderful artists I admire. These women use the needle to express feelings, perceptions and visions. From the oldest tradition to the most innovative design, stitching is used as language to speak out.

A great but radical example is Elisa Bennett, in her work ‘A Woman’s Work is Never Done‘, she use her own hand as a base material “to create the appearance of an incredibly work worn hand”.By using embrodery, historically associated to feminity, Eliza wanted to express that women´s work is not “light and easy”.

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“A Woman´s Work is Never Done”, by Eliza Bennet. Source: elizabennett.co.uk

In some cases, it´s only a question of artistic perception, but in other cases, the needle is use to raise awareness about women´s migration stories, to conciliate a path of violence and abuses with peace. It´s the case of the stitching tradition known as Arpilleras. Originally from Isla Negra (Chile), but currently used in different parts of the world especially in Latin America, this technique have been used to help women to speak out and demonstrate resistance.

The last post shared at Craftivism Lab, it´s about an Arpilleras exhibition titled “Do Retalho a Trama: Costurando Memórias Migrantes“. The exhibition, available to visit at the Museum of Migration of São Paulo until May 2016, shows the work made by a group of women from different backgrounds to reflect about migration and their personal stories.


Exhibition “Do Retalho a Trama”. Source: MigraMundo

Another amazing experience shared at Craftivism Lab, it´s a global conversation, coordinated by Learning Lab Editions, aimed at building migration stories through storytelling, with particular attention to refugee women.

To know more about arpilleras and quilts, I mean conflict textiles, I would recomend to listen Roberta Bacic´s intervention. She is a Chilean researcher on human rights and curator of Arpilleras and Quilts exhibitions.

Because the quilts have been also used as testimonial of women voices, to communicate political and social messages throughout our history or as contemporary quilt activism.

Because it seems everything around 8th March started, also, by “women sewing textiles“.


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