On June 10th a banner celebrating the role of women, those who worked the scraps of land in and around Wolverhampton, will be processed in Cardiff as part of the Processions 2018 project led by the Artichoke Trust. This banner was created at Boundary Way with artist Anne Marie Lagram and some amazing visitors. We are so proud to be a part of such an exciting project celebrating the centenary of the Representation of the People Act, which gave the first British women the right to vote in 1918. Read on to find out more about the project and how we created our banner…
Our banner celebrates the women who worked the land in our local area, who tended the fields and livestock and who worked in the factories to support the war effort. With the help of Anne Marie Lagram, we used basic (and not so basic!) textile techniques to design and create our banner across two sessions at Boundary Way.
From early on we all knew we wanted to represent the organic feel of the allotment and the land the women would have, and still do, work on and so chose hessian to form the base of our design. It was then decided that we would each create an individual ‘plot’ that would then we be sewn onto the background to create an allotment tribute.
With that decided we each set off, men and women of all ages, and began work on our designs. After we had created our beautiful designs it was time to get creating and everyone used different techniques to form their ‘plots’, from needle felting to fabric pens. However, as well as the theme of land tying the work together it was also the colours of the suffrage movement – green, white and violet – that created cohesion within our work.
For the banner edges the younger members of the group used the happa zome (flower bashing) technique with white silk and cotton to help connect the banner to allotment. Dye from the petals was imprinted onto the material, as the plant materials was bashed into it and so the very essence of Boundary Way will be processed in Cardiff this Saturday. And we can’t wait.
We spent our second workshop session sewing the banner together outside and some very kind members of the banner team had created the Boundary Way logo to sit proudly in the middle. It was then decided that our banner should have a message to share with the world and so we created the slogan ‘growing together’ out of floral fabrics and placed it at the top of the banner. We also stuck ‘Wolverhampton’ across the bottom to make sure everyone knows where we are representing we we process the banner and added some bunting, because who doesn’t love a bit of bunting!
We were so pleased with the finished banner and would like to thank everyone who was involved for doing their bit to help us celebrate the centenary of such a great occasion. This weekend, women will be coming together to create mass processions of artwork and these will be taking place in four cities across the U.K. – Belfast, Cardiff, Edinburgh and London. Find out how you can join in, or just support, on the Processions website here.
This workshop was made possible through the support of grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund.
PROCESSIONS is commissioned by 14-18 NOW, the UK’s arts programme for the First World War centenary and produced by Artichoke. With support from the National Lottery through Arts Council England and the Heritage Lottery Fund, and from the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport.
PROCESSIONS Cardiff is produced by Artichoke in partnership with Festival of Voice and Wales Millennium Centre.