On Friday the 10th July 2015, Digswell Arts fellow Allistair Covell attended an exclusive reception at Nanteos Mansion in Aberystwyth, Wales. The reception was the private view of the Cambrian Mountains Wool International Design Challenge 2015 exhibition and alongside meeting and talking to the other designers and sponsors involved, Allistair was very fortunate to meet and talk to HRH The Prince of Wales, who is the President of the Cambrian Mountains Initiative.
HRH Prince Charles was extremely interested in Allistair’s artwork for the Design Challenge, the textile artwork wall hanging ‘Digital Stitch’, and was fascinated to learn that it was a photographic image digitally printed onto the herringbone woven Welsh wool fabric. Allistair attended the reception with Penny McIntyre, the Artistic Director of Think Positive, the print company that Allistair collaborated with, and as Allistair answered The Prince’s questions regarding the artwork, Penny spoke to him about the printing process.
HRH The Prince of Wales was intrigued to learn about the concept behind the artwork’s unique design and was interested to know what had inspired Allistair to create such an distinctive art piece. Allistair talked to The Prince at length about his current research into transferring his paintings into rugs and tapestry designs and how he has been using embroidery threads as a ‘tool’ to investigate how a rug based on a painting might appear when woven or knotted. As Allistair said to His Royal Highness, the question that is driving his creative practice right now is “how would a rug have the same feel or look as the original painting it is based on?” This new process of working is shown in the design of ‘Digital Stitch’ as each stitch represents a paint splash or a brush stroke. The Prince was amused that what started off as experiments and stitched studies has led Allistair to creating works of textile art in themselves.
To mark the occasion Allistair gave HRH The Prince of Wales a special gift for HRH The Duchess of Cornwall. The gift, presented in a white box, was a digitally printed silk square scarf depicting a section of the ‘Digital Stitch’ artwork. His Royal Highness was very grateful for the thoughtful gift for the Duchess and thanked both Allistair and Penny for taking part in the Challenge and for being brave enough to push the boundaries and the preconceived ideas of what can be achieved when working with Welsh wool.
For more information on Allistair’s role in the Cambrian Mountains Wool International Design Challenge, please visit: http://allistaircovell.com/cmwchallenge/
For more information on Cambrian Mountains Wool, please visit: http://cambrianmountainswool.org
Photo of Allistair and HRH The Prince of Wales used with permission by John Pocklington
Brochure cover artwork by greenweeds.com <http://greenweeds.com>