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Fabric artist Kate Bridger shows recent work at Nelson Public Library

Fabric artist Kate Bridger is brightening the Nelson Public Library’s walls these days with a collection of recent work.

As a practicing fabric artist for 35 years, Kate Bridger has developed quite a following. Her work, present in collections worldwide, depicts subjects here at home and abroad. A few years ago she challenged herself to make one piece each week that can be completed in a day—and the Made on Monday movement was born, drawing fabric artists everywhere to take up the challenge.

“I have been a practicing fabric artist since the early 1980s and have fought hard for artists without brushes to be recognized as legitimate practitioners,” says Bridger. “Even today, when many people speak of ‘art’, they mean paintings. So, over the decades, I have invented, refined and experimented with materials, subject matter and techniques to allow me to portray landscapes, streetscapes, wildlife, abstracts, architecture and  a variety of subject matter in as ‘painterly’ a way as I can.”

The Library show is comprised of still lifes, florals, and landscapes, each work painterly yet astonishing in detail. “Beached Brollies” offers striations of blue sea contrasted with colourful umbrellas; in “Everlasting Arrangement #2”, every petal is meticulously crafted; and “Good Morning!” convincingly turns thread and fibre into tea and cookie.

“I love working with fabric because of its texture, layering properties and fickleness but, most of all, because of the unpredictability of this relatively unstable medium than leads me down paths I had not foreseen,” says Bridger.

The exhibition continues until the end of December.