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Loomy Tunes

IMG_0324A craze that has so nearly passed me by has suddenly come to my aid … Loom bands .. an inspired cats cradle of twisted rubber bands is slightly bonkers and batty but the ultimate throwaway jewellery solution. So if someone randomly relieves you of the burden of your heirloom jewellery collection (this happened in real life folks ),you can quickly fabricate an entire couture collection of rubber seamlessly.

In fact you don’t even need to weave and twist the bands either – rather just assemble a whole collection of bands on a piece of elastic and you are whizz- bang- a jeweller extraordinaire.

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Want to make friends, then why not share a pot of beautiful fresh herb tea ! We have a range of fresh grown herbal teas to tantalise the palate and perk up the dulled senses .

Growing on our teashop terrace ,we can nip out and pick the freshest of tips for your pot of delight. Now you read before about the steamy sweaty camels and bedazzled camel drovers …so time for a new tale…

Run your fingers through the glossy stems of our fresh mints …what about the luscious chocolate peppermint ? Smooth  ,seductive and sensual.Rolls into your mouth like a melted After Eight.. The type of After Eight eaten in bed with a wanton lover..and melted on your pillow . The type of After Eight forgotten after a late dinner party but found lurking secretly in the box and eaten with subterfuge and secret glee.The type of After Eight slipped into a leather glove and carried away to a smugglers den where general carousing and making merry may be happening with riotous abandon.You know the type of scene- buxom,garralous serving wench,handsome highwayman with a swagger and a lascivious smile,all tight leather pants and a glint in his eye,and an accommodating dry cleaner.What about the charming rustic , all corduroy and sweaty singlet and a can of coke in his pocket ? Just ready for that advertising break.Or the handsome man of mystery, floral chemise,cravat and oh so  creased linen suit -dragged through a haystack with the boys and then took a ride on the hay wagon .

So we  too can be  the wild rovers of taste, the robin hoods  of  flavour and the buccaneers of  balm .We are the prairie tea queens !

 

We are delighted that this year we have a textile artist in residence bringing a world of wonderful textile beauty to our garden room exhibition space.

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Anne Kelly – about me

“I collect recycled fabric, paper and ephemera using collage, stitch, photographic and print processes to create a range of work, most of which is framed. My inspirations are travel, memory and vintage imagery from a variety of sources. These have been described as ‘small worlds’ and my current layered mixed media work started life as mainly botanical in subject matter before developing into larger more narrative works. I assemble and reassemble the components of each piece using sketchbooks and digital imagery. Often it can be a small scrap or remnant of fabric that inspires a whole piece.  I am inspired by natural history and gardens. Collaborations are an important aspect of my work and I enjoy working with other artists and teaching. I also produce commissions for private and public individuals  – examples of these ‘collages in cloth’, based on special places, people and spaces can be found on my website. I have co written a book for Batsford/Anova press  which was published in 2013 called ‘Connected Cloth’

A Natural History of the Garden At Sussex Prairies-

Anne has brought an amazing textile exhibition of her latest garden related work and is working on a wonderful collaborative wall piece called A Natural History of the Garden which is helping to raise funds for the RSPB Southeast. Anne will be coming to the garden regularly during the summer to work on the project and to lead drop in sessions of creative stitching on a garden theme with a range of glorious textiles.

Make

Why not come and try your hand at making a small piece for our wall..we have all the materials you need and even a whole load of inspiration from books and printed materials as well as the big garden of course.

Take Anne’s easy step by step guide to creating your own piece. What better way to spend an afternoon sewing and chatting with friends over a piece of  homemade cake and a cup of tea.

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and if you would like to learn from Anne why not come and join us for one of Anne’s workshops  here on the Prairies-

 A series of Workshops by Anne Inspired by the garden -

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‘Illustrating Garden Poetry’ saturday 28th June 2014

–Looking at the work of some contemporary poets, we will discuss ways to combine stitch and words in a special piece which you will start on the day and finish afterwards. You will create a unique record of your garden, one that you’ve visited or a special plant/flower that you like. Full day workshop.

 

‘Prairie Paper and Stitch’ saturday 26th July 2014

– combining paper and cloth extends your options when working in textiles. In this one-day course, tutor Anne Kelly will demonstrate some basic bonding techniques and help you to make a small folding book form celebrating a favourite green space.

Full day workshop .

 

‘Planting in Cloth’ –Saturday 6th September 2014

Surrounded by the lovely setting of the Prairie Gardens, we will use them as the basis to record plant and flower drawings and paintings on cloth. These will then be stitched using a variety of techniques and can be finished as solo pieces or incorporated into a larger piece. Full day workshop .

 

 

‘Little House on the Prairie’ – Sunday 28th September 2014

A joint parent and child course – using a variety of simple stitch and bonding techniques, create a unique record of your house and garden with a member of your family. You will make the basis of this piece during the one-day workshop and can continue to embellish and add to it at home. Full day workshop .

read more abut Anne on her website http://www.annekellytextiles.com

Woof Woof !

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Do you know there is a world of gardens out there who welcome  dogs ! YES ! woof woof !

And Sussex Prairies is definitely one of them ! Dogs of all shapes ,sizes, and character are welcome with their  well behaved owners ! Do please keep your dogs  on a short lead when you are in the garden and especially in the borders themselves.

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We have installed some special dog bag dispensers at the entrance to the garden and around the garden with dog waste dustbins with them, so all we ask is that you use them .!. or do ask for a dog waste bag at the teashop and we shall be happy to oblige !

IMG_8273look out for the special carved dopy poo bag dispenser boxes and the bins clearly marked for dog waste

IMG_8275not too much to ask we think to clear up after your dog so everyone can enjoy the garden !

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The NGS also have a list of gardens in each county who are happy to welcome  dogs and here is the one for West Sussex !  why should your best friend stay at home when you are having fun visiting gardens !

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IMG_6363Can you imagine anything more beautiful than shafts of sunshine shimmering through spectacular glass ? We are delighted that Miranda Ellis has brought some of her stunning art pieces to our garden as an exhibition for this season.

A little bit about -Miranda Ellis Glass

I’m a sculptor working mainly in glass, influenced by the natural world and inspired by restricted views that occur in the landscape.

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An idea for a project may come from the beach or walking in the woods where a found or submerged object will start a creative process. The pattern of wood or a manufactured object texturing a surface or being used itself to be cast directly into glass,reusing and giving a new life to something that has been discarded, as well as working from scratch on a creative idea.

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The process can be exciting but the realisation of an idea can take weeks or months to complete.

My background is in ceramics, figurative sculpture, 3D design and mould making, including refractory moulds that are used for glass casting.

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This year for me has seen the opening of my new studio with gallery space which is open to the public, just west of the pier ‘Two horse’ 236 Kings Road Arches, Brighton Artists Quarter.

I’m delighted to have my work in such an exciting garden.

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Www.mirandaellisglass .com

Chelsea Fringe -The Headline Acts

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The Paper House herself

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With the paper garden in tow and now its attendant art gallery coming along for the ride !

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The gallery includes some amazing pictures which were so kindly sent to me by a teacher Lisa Wee and her class of pupils from a school in Nairobi ,Kenya… so here they are being exhibited in the garden.. the paintings will also join Anne Kelly’s exhibition in our grade room for the rest of the season.

When we thought about our week (31st May until 8th June 2014)  of paper related happenings,workshops and exhibitions  for the Chelsea Fringe down on the prairies ,we knew we would have wealth of stars to help us get into that groove and here are the best stars we have been able to line up for you

Pages by Stages : Alison Crosthwaite

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Prairie hens in paper kilns : Sabine Dahn

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alongside these stars are their co-stars

Anne Kelly : our talented textile artist  in residence who will be inspiring us with her textiles ,and guiding craftwork in paper ,textiles and beyond from the prairie wagon in the garden room

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Jill Tattersall  : an artist with an eye for paper making who will be helping you send out postcards from the prairies and who will be constructing concertina books to baffle and bamboozle and she will be showing you how to make your own Matisse masterpiece

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Jill Staples : a lovely local photographer working with images applied on to Japanese papers.She also makes beautifully colour co-ordinate photographic books

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Paul Cox: sculptor extraordinaire turning his hand to big paper sculpture

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Lydia Crook: paper sculptor whose work we shall be exhibiting via our virtual online gallery

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Julia Widdows : writer extraordinaire who will be promoting her books and will be running a win a book competition

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the ways of paper are many and mysterious.. And it is time for you to experience their many layers and latitudes..

And don’t forget the strangely challenging and wonderful Paw People exhibition by Tom Barker now showing in a marquee in the garden.

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“The Teddy Bears Picnic” with the Paw People

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We are so pleased that Tom decided  to bring his amazing exhibition here to the Prairies during our Chelsea Fringe week. Come find the Paw People in the marquee in the garden  !

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what you will see -

The ‘good’ bears sit at the picnic table, the ‘bad’ look on from a distance.

The table spread is our world as a living entity, Gaia.

The wooden beasties hanging around the edge are the gods and monsters of our imaginative minds.

 

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Tom explains how he came up with the idea for the exhibit-

“I asked friends (by email and facebook) to name 5 people or organisations who they felt have had a positive affect on the world and 5 negative and to give a brief reason why. It could be anyone and I asked for it to be heart felt. I took a photo of these people’s faces from the internet and sewed it on to a soft toy. (For organisations, I chose the CEO, founder or a person who could be held as responsible). The Paw People were born!”

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How Tom made each Teddy Bear -

“I then attached people’s personal comments (in blue) and a profile usually compiled from wikipedia. It is people’s personal opinions and so subjective and although I have edited it, I do not necessarily agree with all choices, I didn’t want it to be my opinion, some of them are quite controversial. I am aware that if I asked a different audience the placing of many could be reversed. I wanted to highlight their positive or negative aspects and so I have picked out information that I thought relevant.”

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What the research revealed -

“It was very interesting researching these people and what soon became apparent was that no one is all good or all bad. That these selected individuals are representing wider societal issues. That using these terms judges and isolates people and isn’t constructive in any dialogue aimed at tackling the issues.”

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what you need to do – 

come and interact with the exhibit and see who you think should be at the teatable.. ! 

“I don’t expect you to read all the paw people profiles, that would take some time, the weight of their profiles alone gives testament to how much impact has been evidenced of their doings. I wanted to make a little bestiary of humanities impact on the world

The aim of the installation is not to judge but to encourage engagement in a dialogue.”

In conclusion-

‘I do believe that we are affecting our environment in such a way that humans will not be able to exist on this planet in the long term without fundamental changes in our attitude towards and use of it. Present governing systems need to change.”

 

The installation is for sale or hire. All pieces are for sale individually.

We are keen to provide related workshops, discussions and take on commissions to explore other issues within our society.

For more information contact Tom Barker

07931866395

ttombarker@gmail.com

                                                          

 

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