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img_1367The aim :

to make the longest strip of denim in the world , or certainly in Sussex to support the Jeans for Genes Charity – Genetic Disorders UK. the charity that aims to transform the lives of children with genetic disorders.We shall create denim covered collecting boxes along the trail around the garden !

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How will it work :

Running as a trail from our entrance right through the garden , sinuously weaving through the borders. Stitched into the piece will be tabs dispensing information and facts about the process of making denim (the good , the bad and the ugly facts ) facts about indigo seeds and the dyeing process , and the story of the wearing of denim work pants by north american pioneers etc… zips, button flies , tags and pockets will create the joints along the way and will add to the fabric wonder.Have calculated the trail will be at least 1km long.Yikes !

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The First Rules I have set myself

  • only to use orange cotton to stitch it all together (Levis used orange stitching which was originally designed to match the copper rivets first used in jeans by Nevada tailor Jacob Davis).
  • the strip will be kept at 7″ wide
  • vow to go and see the  Ian Berry exhibition Gallery Different at Catto Gallery- Ian is famous for making photo-realistic pictures in denim

img_1378Day 1 – Friday 18th November 2016

I make a start with three of our lovely volunteers starting to cut up the first swathe of jeans and a big learning curve begins !

  • The difficulty of cutting up a really tough fabric – you can see why it was the workwear fabric of choice (first casualty -brand new pair of Japanese scissors !)
  • The realisation that I won’t be able to actually use the zips for linking the strips !
  • The discovery that the button waistband fasteners will have to do the job
  • The obvious discovery that bog standard machine needles are not up to the job (second casualty – 2 broken machine needles)(note to self – order denim grade needles for machine )

to be continued……….

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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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