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Kettle, AM., 2018.

Alice Kettle: Thread Bearing Witness

Output Type:Exhibition
Venue:The Whitworth, Manchester UK
Dates:1/9/2018 - 24/4/2019

A major international multi-venue project by Kettle, presenting new monumental textile works which engage in current discourse on refugee displacement and movement. The project includes significant works by Kettle with collaborative and individual works from refugees in Dunkirk, Calais and Greek refugee camps, and refugee groups in UK made through contribution and co-creation. The project launched at the Winchester Discovery Centre (2017), fully realised at the Whitworth Art Gallery, Manchester (2018-19), touring as key exhibit to the International Textile Biennale with SuperSlowWay (2019).

The making of the works and their presentation are utilized as a means to engage with marginalized people and evidence the broader issues of migration in society. Kettle evolved a model and environment of practice through stitch that enabled trust, equity and high-quality creativity to flourish.

The project delivered multiple workshops, residencies and activities with refugees and schools. A parallel international public engagement project 'Stitch A Tree' received over 5000 stitched contributions and was adopted by the British Council Women of the World Festival in Karachi and shown in the Karachi Biennale (2019). 20 displaced artists collaborated on works made with the linked project Travelling Heritage Bureau through the organisation Digital Women's Network NW. Refugee work went to Luxembourg Festival des migrations, des cultures et de la citoyenneté. A paper was presented by Kettle at the British Academy 'Being Human Festival' and 'UK-Italy Partners in Culture'. A collaborative event with ROUTES Centre, University of Exeter, hosted refugee artist collective Giocherenda. The project has attracted extensive comment and encouraged multiple satellite projects with 25,000 views in 10 months to its website. The project was supported by Arts Council of Great Britain, HLF and a variety of other funders.

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