Design, Nature, pattern, printmaking, Science and Art, Textile Design, Uncategorized

Eugène Séguy’s Prints and discovering the Biodiversity Heritage Library.

This week, my eyes have been drawn to the colourful and distinctive patterns of Eugène Séguy. I have not been able to find much information written on the internet about Séguy, a French Entomologist and Artist (1890 – 1 June 1985). He was a highly successful designer, whose enticing patterns represent the beauty and natural patterns observed in insects. I am drawn to the bright colours adopted and the use of repetition, Seguy’s design showcase the diverse and varied patterns created by nature and visible in the detail and intricacy of insects. The below images are available to view as part of the NCSU Library’s Rare and Unique Digital Collections and can be viewed here.

Papillons. Plate 3. E. A. Séguy's Papillons (QL466 .S448 1920), Special Collections Research Center at NCSU Libraries
Papillons. Plate 3. Image Attribution:E. A. Séguy’s Papillons (QL466 .S448 1920), Special Collections Research Center at NCSU Libraries
Papillons. Plate 10. E.A. Seguy.E. A. Séguy's Papillons (QL466 .S448 1920), Special Collections Research Center at NCSU Libraries
Papillons. Plate 10. Image Attribution:E. A. Séguy’s Papillons (QL466 .S448 1920), Special Collections Research Center at NCSU Libraries

 

Papillons. Plate 2. E. A. Séguy's Papillons (QL466 .S448 1920), Special Collections Research Center at NCSU Libraries
Papillons. Plate 2. Image Attribution:E. A. Séguy’s Papillons (QL466 .S448 1920), Special Collections Research Center at NCSU Libraries
E. A. Séguy's Papillons (QL466 .S448 1920), Special Collections Research Center at NCSU Libraries 2
Papillons (Patterns). Image Attribution:E. A. Séguy’s Papillons (QL466 .S448 1920), Special Collections Research Center at NCSU Libraries
E. A. Séguy's Papillons (QL466 .S448 1920), Special Collections Research Center at NCSU Libraries
Papillons. Image Attribution:E. A. Séguy’s Papillons (QL466 .S448 1920), Special Collections Research Center at NCSU Libraries

 

The natural world, provides an endless resource of inspiration, in the diverse and varied way in which nature creates pattern. This fascinating variety, can be observed in the subtle differences observed in the many variates of species of butterflies that are beautifully illustrated in the below images. The illustrations are part of a book, published in 1775, which can be accessed online here,  thanks to the  incredible online resource that is, the Biodiversity Heritage Library.

The Library works to inspire discovery through free access to biodiversity knowledge. The site, improves research methodology by collaboratively making biodiversity literature openly available to the world as part of a global biodiversity community.

I have only just discovered the resource myself and I am overwhelmed by the wealth of imagery and information which has been made available to view online. It opens up a fascinating window into many different aspects of the natural world and I definitely recommend this hugely valuable resource.

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A Amsteldam :Chez Barthelmy Wild,1779-1782 [i.e. 1775-1782]

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A Amsteldam :Chez Barthelmy Wild,1779-1782 [i.e. 1775-1782]
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A Amsteldam :Chez Barthelmy Wild,1779-1782 [i.e. 1775-1782]
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A Amsteldam :Chez Barthelmy Wild,1779-1782 [i.e. 1775-1782]

art, Craft, Design, Mid-Century-Modern textiles, printmaking, Textile Design, Uncategorized

Developing Patterns from Paper Collages

Following my previous post, ‘The Joy of Paper’, here are some patterns developed from the paper collages. After cropping the collages into small squares of colour combinations and compositions that I found interesting, I experimented with flipping the images to make repeat patterns in Adobe Illustrator. Here are the results.

 

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Craft, Design, Tapestry, Textile Design, Weaving

Marta Rogoyska and a Theatre of Images

Recently I picked up a vintage copy of ‘Crafts’ Magazine (no.63 July/August 1983). I was attracted to it because of the bright, characterful design on the cover. The image was both full of energy and fun but also showed restraint, control and elegant minimalism. I had to find out more.

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The tapestry is by Marta Rogoyska. The famously outspoken, charismatically assertive artist and craftsperson, one of the most acclaimed and feted weavers in Britain before moving to the United States in 1995. She describes her approach to tapestry as unpretentious and concise, the mediums idiosyncrasy providing opportunities to create speculative and aesthetically spontaneous work. Her aim being to simply, “engage and intrigue the viewer.”

Excerpted from Tapestry, A Woven Narrative, Black Dog Press, 2011 accessed from http://martarogoyska.com/updatesnews/

Intrigued I certainly am by her monumental tapestries, and filled with admiration for the commitment, physical exertion and imagination that goes into them.

The article, ‘Theatre of Images: Marta Rogoyska, tapestry weaver, interviewed by Ian Starsmore’ published in Crafts Magazine 1983, makes a very interesting read. Rogoyska’s passion for the medium of weaving is obvious through taking one glance at her work. But what is especially impressive is how she brought a vigorous energy and love of drama to a medium that could too easily be misunderstood and under estimated, “weaving was not the usual thing for anyone who was dynamic.”

 

Rogoyska finds inspiration from a variety of sources and we learn that she keeps small sketchbooks filled with ideas, decorative schemes, landscapes which provide starting points for tapestries. Examples of sources of inspiration, include early french tapestries, primitive art, modern painting, music, theatre, ideas about story-telling, a feeling for life and for an audience.

In comparing tapestry to painting, Rogoyska identifies some interesting distinctions between the two.

“You have to be twenty times more alert, twenty times more intelligent and twenty times harder on yourself than in painting, so that you bloody well unpick what has taken you two days to do if it’s wrong”

“ Because tapestry has to be done in a strict sequence from the bottom upwards, you have to be more visionary too, very much in the sense that you must visualise what is coming and what has been. You are committed and there is no going back. I see its affinities with life so much, balancing on this crazy tightrope, trying to be intelligent about the future, learn from the past and very much involved in the present.”

Her work therefore takes elements from what are usually known as craft, design or art, as she decides. “The division between art and craft presents fascinating issues which for me are living arguments, positive things which I use and enjoy. It’s possible then to step down on either side as it suits, though you are hated on both sides. I’m prepared to shout and bang a few tables, but I don’t have any set rules. These are things I’m redefining the whole time.”

‘Theatre of Images: Marta Rogoyska, tapestry weaver, interviewed by Ian Starsmore’ published in Crafts Magazine 1983

Images accessed from http://martarogoyska.com