Slow Time with a Butterfly 

Woven Tapestry Exhibition at The Pearse Museum, St Enda’s Park, Dublin 16 September 6th – November 5th 2023

by Gazette Reporter
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Special guest speaker Mary Heffernan Director of National Monuments and Head of Collections, Heritage Services OPW

Slow Time with a Butterfly refers to the slow, detailed practice of tapestry weaving. The technique uses “butterflies” or bobbins of coloured yarns woven through a cotton or linen warp to create the image of the artist’s design.

Contemporary Tapestry Artists Ireland (CTA) is a group of professional tapestry weavers working in studios all over the country who come together to collaborate and exhibit their work to give a platform to handwoven fine art tapestry and raise the profile of this textile medium. By its nature a solitary occupation, CTA Ireland gives its members an opportunity to connect, network and collaborate. Woven tapestry and the influence of this textile medium informs each of their work be it in fibre, paper or collage. 

In 2021, when face to face gatherings were prohibited the group took to meeting on Zoom and exhibiting their work on social media platforms. Plans were made to exhibit as soon as freedom allowed and so Slow Time with a Butterfly emerged as a travelling exhibition in 2022. For artists working in a medium which dates from ancient times, the irony of 21st century technology being instrumental in bringing the group from strength to strength, is not lost. 

It is part of CTA Ireland’s mission statement that by exhibiting as a group, members will convey the versatility and diversity of the unique art form of woven tapestry. To take every opportunity to create visibility and further the understanding of this often misunderstood medium through demonstrations, artist talks and workshops. In this exhibition each member is show-casing the development of their work in recent years. 

Tapestry artist Angela Forte with her work at the woven tapestry exhibition ‘Slow Time with a Butterfly’ at The Pearse Museum, St Enda’s Park in Dublin.

Slow Time with a Butterfly was first seen in King House in Boyle, Co Roscommon in April 2022. It travelled to the market House Craft Gallery in Cappoquin, Co Waterford in June 2022. Now it will conclude its tour at The Pearse Museum, St Enda’s Park, Rathfarnham, Dublin from 6th September – 5th November 2023

This exhibition is dedicated to the memory of esteemed member Lisbeth Mulcahy

Pictures Mark Stedman

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