UK-based artist and designer Hannah Waldron, has steadily been expanding her textiles practice through a multifaceted career involving exhibitions, research projects, teaching and design collaborations. Her colourful weaves tell stories of place and travel while exploring the temporal and spatial qualities of textiles. “I began weaving in 2010 as a result of seeing the astounding weavings at the Bauhaus archive in Berlin,” Hannah tells It’s Nice That. “So, throughout my study of the textiles medium, I have used Bauhaus philosophies (such as the unification of craft and art) as guiding principles in my practice”.
This year, Hannah’s first solo show Primary Traveller exhibited at the Museum in the Park, Stroud, as part of Select Festival 2018. The curation cleverly frames the narrative nature of Hannah’s weaves, hanging languidly from wooden poles on the walls and minimalist structures creating a spatially intriguing exhibition space. The “nomadic, modular structure” is a collaboration with woodwork, Matt Jamieson, who brought the immersive textile space to life. “The idea is that the structure, Primary Traveller, will travel to different places, be reconfigured to that space and current work will be hung, stretched, draped etc”, from Stroud to Antwerp this year.
Within Hannah’s textile designs cubic structures mimic the repeated use of the grid and in turn, “The grid is always somewhat visible in my work, whether in drawing or weaving” explains Hannah. “I find there are infinite possibilities even within the most strict limitations. When faced with a blank page, I draw a grid and start from there”. The close relationship between the weaves and modular structures link “archetypal textile design language with the built environment. The compression and extensions in the compositions continue Hannah’s interest in high speed travel, rhythm and acceleration in relation of the process of hand weaving”.
Although Hannah’s weaves consistently adhere to the grid design, the compositions are creatively liberating, feeling more like hand-drawings rather than complexly woven patterns. The “architectural elements, stacks of shape, repeating vertical lines and rich colour palette elevate the designs” from the methodical weaving techniques to an engrossing sense of place.