Commissioned by ArtHouse Jersey, 'Stone Upon Stone' is a community textile installation by Alice Burnhope, crafted in collaboration with six groups. Inspired by Jersey's geology and plant life, it evokes the Neolithic era, inviting participation to reconnect with nature and transports viewers to ancient rituals and landscapes.

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'The Land and Us | La Tèrre et Nous' project was born out of a need to reconnect and prioritise Jersey’s precious ecosystem. In the exhibition newly commissioned artworks explore Jersey’s past, present and future habitation of the land. Travelling from their ancient neolithic past, when the land was a sacred site of ritual, through to farming traditions, oral histories and earthly language of Jerriais, to woodlands, indigenous species and pathways that encircle the Island, The Land and Us is a place to gather and reflect on the natural world.

The project was developed by ArtHouse Jersey’s Community Producer, Karen Le Roy Harris, in collaboration with Jersey born artist and curator Alexander Mourant, and partner artists, Alice Burnhope Hannah Fletcher, Remi Graves and Sam Carvosso. Each artist was commissioned to create a new artwork through a collaborative encounter or workshop with people in Jersey. The exhibition is the culmination of a year-long community learning programme that took place at ArtHouse Jersey and community centres across the Island, working with diverse members of the community across all generations.

Featuring photography, sculpture, textile, drawing, poetry and installation, The Land and Us offers a myriad of approaches to further our collective, sensory understanding of the natural world, and strives to deepen our appreciation of its interconnected forms of knowledge. In an age when the climate emergency threatens the natural world, the exhibition calls for the urgent transformation of human to nonhuman relationships, to empower and rethink our collective responsibility through knowledge transfer, empathy and art.

Aligned with the Sun: The Ancient Past | ‘Stone Upon Stone’

Inspired by visits to Jersey’s ancient dolmens, Alice in collaboration with six community groups created Stone upon Stone, a large soft sculpture in the centre of the gallery. The colours and forms are inspired by Alice’s observations of Jersey’s geology and plant life. Stone upon Stone is interactive, transporting us back 6000 years to become our neolithic forebears engaged in the process of building a dolmen. This era marked the dawn of recorded human involvement in Jersey-exploring the terrain, communing with the spiritual realm, partaking in rituals, celebrations and revering the divine essence of the land, sun and sea. Alice urges us to participate and reconnect with nature’s depths.

To create Stone upon Stone, Alice worked with intergenerational groups to produce vibrant and textural fabrics. The process was playful, messy and filled with colour, with each group using a particular combination of organic materials to produce different tones: Dementia Jersey (madder and turmeric), d’Auvergne Primary School (turmeric, earth, bark, leaves) and Cheval Roc Residential & Nursing Home (madder). Participants learnt about the specific natural dyes and bundle techniques.

Looking closely at Stone upon Stone you will find beautiful details from the embroidery/appliqué workshops where Alice worked with Jersey artists, craft makers, Caesarea Quilters and Youthful Minds. The sessions involved expanded drawing activities, followed by the use of viewfinders to develop compositions and hone perceptions of the landscape. Participants “stitched from life” or drew upon images of their favourite Jersey environments to create these tactile artworks.

Alice combined the natural dyed fabrics with the delicate stitched artworks to create Stone upon Stone; a layered, three-dimensional tapestry, reflecting Jersey’s history and environment. By utilising waste textiles that would otherwise be discarded and natural dyed fabrics made with Jersey’s plant life, the workshops were rooted in sustainability, rebalancing our relationship to material use, waste and effect on the natural world.

2 x 3 metres | Materials: off-cut naturally dyed textiles, embroideries, scrim foam, hay

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London Craft Week 2024 - Staffordshire Street Gallery

'Textile Assembly' curated by Craft Show

Showcasing the work of both celebrated and emerging makers the exhibition will explore textile construction and the personal stories woven into their very fabric. The act of making will be at the heart of the space, with a programme of hands-on workshops, drawing inspiration from the exhibition itself. From natural dye and embroidery to yarn art and quilting, the exhibition will be alive with the hum of conversations and craftspeople sharing their skills. 

Craft Show, founded by two female makers in South East London in 2017, celebrates modern craft. By makers, for makers, it was born out of the belief that works of craft deserve the same space and attention as works of art. Their shows have a strong storytelling element, using craft objects and textiles to explore themes in modern craft.