Wednesday, 15 December 2021

Feminism, Amy Atkin and lace in Textile journal

 I’m delighted that my paper based on the life and work of Amy Atkin has now been published in Textile the Journal of Cloth and Culture. The title is ‘Neo-Victorianism, feminism and lace: Amy Atkin’s place at the dinner table.’ It was published online in the summer but is now in the printed journal which means I have some free copies to give away! As you will know by now if you follow this blog, Amy Atkin was the first female Nottingham machine lace designer but relinquished work on marriage as did so many other women of her time. The paper and my practice response focus on this aspect, looking at the domestic constraints women experienced at the beginning of the twentieth century and comparing Amy’s training and career with that of other female designers of the time, such as those at the Glasgow Art School. I used lace mats for my practice response entitled ‘The marriage bond’ which was inspired by the use of place settings in ‘The Dinner Party’ by the second wave feminist Judy Chicago. Each mat includes a lace design inspired by Amy’s work tacked in place to suggest how easily women’s careers can be torn away. They also include wording from the marriage ceremony ‘for better, for worse, for richer, for poorer’ highlighting the change in women’s circumstances on marriage. Neo-Victorianism reflects on the justification for using Amy’s life to comment on feminism from the viewpoint of the twenty-first century. If you’re interested there are 50 free copies available from the link below – first come first served!


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