Half of Earth’s life-giving force called photosynthesis comes from land plants. The other half comes from the sea.
“Seaweed” is the common name for the numerous species of visible marine algae that grow in lakes, rivers and oceans comprising what has been called “the forest underwater”. These plants are the inspiration for artist Gitte Hansen’s exhibition of fabrics and textile collages.
Windfall leaves from the forest floor and local plants are collected, dried and then bundled in fabric in order to permanently imprint the colour and pattern onto the surface. Earth pigments are held in a suspension of soya milk which can be painted or printed onto a ground cloth to impart permanent colour providing a canvas to work into.
Gitte Hansen’s current practice involves working with natural dyes from local plants and naturally occurring minerals from the earth that have been used for thousands of years to produce colour. Stitching, printing, painting and hand sewing provide techniques for her to understand colour, texture and pattern resulting in new ideas for textiles in response to the local environment and natural world.
‘Forest Underwater’ includes both work in the retail space (viewable during venue hours) and a window installation (viewable 24/7 from outdoors).