These two amazing artists are rethinking how to support their efforts to promote Ugandan bark cloth and the communities it can change - through a project called Barkcloth to Artcloth. Check out the link.
"The exquisitely stitched and beautifully embellished barkcloth contributions, from well over 100 people, and all made up by Janet Middleton into fabulous baby shoes, fits perfectly with this strap line, ONE TINY STEP TO A BRIGHTER FUTURE . This is because they have all been made in support of 'Hands up for Uganda' and building awareness of this charity in such a creative way, will lead to brighter futures for so many children and all community members of Kisaabwa." Bobby Britnell.
Each pair of shoes is made from a piece of barkcloth that has been transformed by artists from all over the world. They will be exhibited at the following venues in England with more to follow!
Since I began researching barkcloth in 2005, I was always asked if I ever used it in my artwork, and the answer was always no. I think that from the first time I spied it in Wakiso in a small stall, I never felt like a participant, but an observer. Even after learning about the incredible opportunities to manipulate the surface, transform the material into 2 and 3 dimensional objects, I did not incorporate it into my studio practice. Until....
Bobby asked that I and a fellow artist, Amie Adelman, participate in Barkcloth to Artcloth, and I have fallen in love with the material in a new way. It was wonderful to hold the material and think about how I wanted to leave my mark on it. I don't foresee a new body of work as of yet, but it was great to find a new way to relate to the material. Here are images of my cloth and Jane Middleton made shoes!