The T A P I S S E R I E
by harry clark

The commission and the design

For the crowning conclusion of the project "Victorian Townhouse Reinvented" the clients fulfilled their long-cherished dream of a tapestry in the understanding as one of the oldest material cultural techniques of mankind and applied in the aesthetic color and form language of harryclarkinterior. It quickly became clear that this wish would result in an independent project.

As a working basis harry clark conceived and drew a design with pencil, watercolors and wood crayons on handmade cardboard, which takes up the parameters of the room design, represents a work with autonomous character within the overall concept and sees itself as an integral part of the architecture.



After intensive preparations and the occupation with the far comprehensive and multifaceted topic, the tapestry studio of the renowned West Dean College / near Chichester in West Sussex, England could be won for the realization and thus the project could be realized in monthly meetings and co-ordinations.


The description and implementation

The dimensions of the tapestry are 185 cm x 125 cm - the size, for the intended space. The geometric basic form of the "Falling Shards" is a cut, diamond-like shard of glass, whose color is refracted in free fall by the light in a wide variety of reflections and gradients - a stylistic element that runs like a thread through the overall concept of the townhouse.

The sketchy and in parts volatile design, left creative room for weaving technical and creative possibilities in the implementing design, especially for the structures and color-thread mixtures, with the interpenetration of colors and their nuances. This, in turn, a reference to the integration in architecture, with a formal and rhythmic texturing and a complex interplay between horizontal, vertical and diagonal components.

Specially colored and differently colored threads were thus spun together so that, as in music, the lines, colors and shapes, like individual notes, whole chords, like cadences and strands of melody, intertwine to form a well thought-out composition and form a multi-dimensional structure. Thus, an abstract thought in weaving became an act of three-dimensional drawing and painting, which becomes sensually perceptible and experienceable in the "Falling Shards".


The weaver and the ... College / Studio

Phil Sanderson, "leader oft he West dean Tapestry Studio",, has a long, profound experience and an artistic expertise with many commissions from artists:inside and cultural sites that have been able to realize their works thanks to his skill and knowledge. Not to forget his own works, which distinguish him as an accomplished craftsman and technician, combined with a keen perception and a highly trained artistic sensibility, as a master of his trade.

In his profession he is an interpreter, an interpreter, a mediator, a linker, who transposes the scores presented to him into textile art, following his own imagination. But he is not only a performer. His work goes far beyond that.

On this basis, the close work-creative atmosphere between artist, weaver and client develops: a creative togetherness, arguing, discussing, understanding, trying things out - a rich exchange of experience - a fruitful dialogue. In this dynamic, radically constructive and productive network of relationships, a joint, independent creation emerges that gives expression to the potential contained in the design.



The loom and threads

The loom and dweaving and spinning have a centuries-old history. They are one of the first man-made technologies, the product of which is nomadic easy to transport and, in addition to the functional aspects, has always combined various aesthetic levels. Many stories and conversations have flowed and continue to flow into a single product, adding to their appeal.

As at all times, the basic structure of the fabric consists of "warp" and "weft" - two thread systems of a three-dimensional grid that are crossed together on a horizontal Basselisse loom to form the weave. Here the "warp" is the vertical basic grid, the basic structure, support and base of stretched wool threads that disappear and the "weft" is the horizontal, visible, differently colored wool threads that create the image of the tapestry.

For the play with the threads, the thickness of the threads, the coloring of the material, different materialities, material condensations and voids, the design is enlarged to the final dimensions of the tapestry and is always visible to the weaver behind his loom.he threads



Notes and recommendations

It is only in the last few years that the theme of "tapestry" or "tapisserie" has once again increasingly moved into the spotlight of cultural awareness. It is experiencing a renaissance that is putting an end to the unjustified shadowy existence of recent decades.

Here are a few selected, exemplary examples:

The Threads of Modernism - Kunsthalle Munich:

"Matisse, Picasso, Miró ... und die französischen Gobelins"


Hella Jongerius - Gropius Bau Berlin:

"Through KOSMOS WEBEN I try to understand the cultural significance of weaving - beyond materials and technology - with questions of sustainability, social responsibility and spirituality."


La Maison PINTON - Tapisserie et tapis d'Aubusson depuis 1867 :

"...150 years dedicated to perfection have made PINTON one of today's leading names in exceptional carpets, rugs and tapestries..."

" for perfection has always driven PINTON to innovate. The workshop is equipped with all the most cutting-edge technology necessary for contemporary design. Therefore, any material, such as metal threads or lurex, can be blended with traditional wool or silk threads produced in local weaving factories..."


Maria Lai - Ulassai /Sardinia:

"Art is to connect things, to relate them without taking away their peculiarity."

"Essere è tessere - To be is to weave, to spin, to braid, to embroider." and

harry-clark-vor-dem-cottage westdean college tapestry

The final remark

The respective supporting program of the appointments in the tapestry studio should not remain unmentioned here. The College, a manor house with a flint façade, whose history dates back to the 11th century and is linked, among other things, by the famous romance of Queen Elizabeth I and the Earl of Essex.

The country estate is surrounded by an English picture-book landscape, the green hills of the South Downs, with grazing sheep, which are so picturesquely distributed, as if they were rushed by a director to the places marked out for them, as soon as the viewers pay attention to the landscape

After the appointments were strengthened in a nearby picturesque pub and restaurant "The Fox Goes Free" at the end of a narrow country road, in the small village of Charlton, with a relaxed atmosphere and excellent cuisine - which even deliciously takes into account all sorts of preferences and allergies.

Circumstances of work projects can hardly be more beautiful.


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