Fife Contemporary link up with StAnza to explore Warp and Weft.

The collaborative project will look at Tweeds.The collaborative project will look at Tweeds.
The collaborative project will look at Tweeds.
Fife Contemporary has further expanded its collaborative programme with StAnza, Scotland’s International Poetry Festival, to explore the theme, Warp and Weft: a tapestry of poetry.

Two textile exhibits will be brought to StAnza by Fife Contemporary, along with a free drop-in weaving workshop.

Connections across textile cultures is the focus of Adil Iqbal’s Twilling Tweeds project, which will be exhibited at the Byre Theatre throughout the festival. A Scottish-Pakistani designer and cultural practitioner, Iqbal connected embroiderers from the remote mountain region of Chitral, Northern Pakistan with the work of Harris Tweed weavers - without them ever meeting in person.

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By sharing and discussing cloth made in Scotland and bringing it to the Pakistani embroiderers, they were able to respond through craft and language. A poem drawn from these responses, created by Scottish novelist Donald S. Murray, is the focus of one of the beautiful embroideries made in Pakistan as a result of this exchange.

An exchange of words through the lens of textiles is also evident in a poetic response to the work of Dovecot Studios, presented by poet Lisa Fannen at the Laidlaw Music Centre in St Andrews.

Dovecot is Scotland’s world-famous tapestry studio, renowned for collaborative work alongside visual artists.

Their gun-tufted textile piece, Grangemouth at Night Smoke and Lights, is based on a painting of the Fife coast looking across to the refinery by artist Kurt Jackson. The textile piece was selected by Lisa Fannen, and will be exhibited alongside a spoken word audio recording made in response to the piece.

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Textiles as a stimulus for communal making and conversation is behind an open access, all-day weaving workshop with Fife weaver, Janet Hughes who will be based in the Burgh Chambers on Saturday, March 9. Between poetry readings, events and experiences, festival visitors will be invited to drop in and enjoy weaving a small textile piece of their own, or to contribute to a large communal weaving.

Kate Grenyer, Fife Contemporary Director, said: “The festival theme of Warp and Weft is inspired directly by textile – an ancient craft that is so embedded in our everyday life that we barely notice how omnipresent it is in our lived experience, and also our language. Language, communication and conversation connects these works, both the two exhibitions and our all-day weaving event – that I am certainly excited to join in with!”

As part of this year’s festival, Fife Contemporary and StAnza have selected an artist in residence, who will be attending alongside an appointed poet in residence. The artist will open a creative and collaborative discussion with the selected poet, towards creating new work based on the 2024 StAnza Festival theme.