Murmuration (Mini)Murmuration (Mini)
This framed panel for wall mounting is an insight into the phenomenon that is a murmuration of starlings. An event that only occurs on Autumnal evenings the behaviour of the birds creates sweeping and rapidly changing patterns. The behaviour is thought to ward off potential predators by smaller creatures massing together, in the same way that bees swarm and fish shoal.
Anna Gravelle as a surface pattern textile designer sees the graphic potential of the murmuration and in this piece we have an insight that allows our imagination to take flight.
Anna is perhaps best known for taking the traditional craft of tufting (usually associated with rug making and candlewick bedspreads) and using its potential for adding a tactile and three-dimensional character not just to fabrics but as a medium for realising artworks. She has drawn on this tradition, more often associated with creating hardy wool rugs, and made it relevant for a contemporary audience, using luxury materials – the finest wool cloth and silky threads – making it decliate andworking the technique like exquisite embroidery. The result intrigues the viewer and draws them irresistibly to touch.
Anna works on a customised tufting machine, the technique requiring her to work the fabric in reverse so she is almost ‘blind’ and having to use her skill and experience to develop her pattern. When the work is complete and Anna turns the fabric over there is a moment of revelation to see the embroidered texture beneath.
Her work therefore goes beyond intriguing textural form and engages us in the sheer skill of the maker.