“Tactile shadows” originated as part of my on-going research into innovative textiles and products for the domestic sphere. The focus of this particular work was to interrogate the emotional values of materials through the exploration of tactility. It was commissioned by the V&A and was designed to showcase leading designers working with “touch” as part of their design strategies.
By exploiting binary opposites in relation to touch this research allowed for a new vocabulary to evolve, one that combines both a visual and a tactile language. Experimentation with low-tech and high-tech materials and finishing print techniques led to the final exhibited hanging. Exhibitors were actively encouraged to touch and interact with the piece and to explore the contrast between what “looks” soft and what “feels” soft.
As in my other work, this textile piece aimed at subverting stereotypical domestic textiles associations, in this case the traditional theme of “floral design” was subverted by the concept of shadows as well as by the use of atypical materials and print processes. By rendering material the immaterial (shadows) the hanging challenged the traditional notion of floral representation in furnishings.