All Blues

William Morris Gallery 2015

Lucille’s residency at the William Morris Gallery was inspired by the indigo work of William Morris and dye chemist Thomas Wardle and their fabric sample books. She used their commitment to achieving strong, even natural dye colours expressed through their often heated letter exchanges to strengthen her own dye practice. Her residency All Blues explored the complex history of indigo dye with slavery and imperialism through a series of indigo dyed resist patterns and embroidery work, presented in her own version of Morris’s sample books. She also delivered a series of popular indigo dye workshops, talks and demonstrations. The title of her residency came from a track on jazz musician Miles Davis’s seminal Kind of Blue, whose lyrics and music capture the beauty and pain surrounding natural indigo.

Lucille’s residency was supported by the William Morris Gallery with recycled cotton for her sample book and workshops provided by Textile Recycling for Aid and International Development (TRAID). She also secured an Arts Council grant to support the public engagement activities.

“I’ve always been passionate about William Morris’s work after learning about him at school and when I heard about the residency I felt my work with indigo was a good fit. Indigo was Morris’ favourite colour and his extensive work with natural dyes inspires me. The residency was a perfect opportunity for a deeper exploration of his work and to use it as a platform for my own ideas. The exposure from residency helped me to see new opportunities, make contacts and reconcile my textile practice with my research interests”.

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