Stitched Voices: from an exhibition to an academic commitment

Have you ever ventured into organising an exhibition? And not just any exhibition, but one that addresses people’s experiences of violent conflict, arbitrary oppression and grave injustice? We hadn’t… until we decided to commission and organise Stitched Voices, an exhibition of textiles telling the personal stories of people who live through such horrible experiences, who express their solidarity with needle and thread, or who take to the streets with sewn banners to protest.

Curator Roberta Bacic (left) and the initial Stitched Voices organising team, Christine Andrä, Lydia Cole, Dani House and Berit Bliesemann de Guevara.

We – Christine Andrä, Berit Bliesemann de Guevara, Lydia Cole and Danielle House -started this blog as a collective reflection on the process of the daunting task of organising an exhibition of sewn, quilted, and embroidered textile stories of violence, oppression and injustice in Aberystwyth in 2016. In this task, we collaborated with the Conflict Textiles collection based in Northern Ireland and its curator Roberta Bacic.

Ever since, our academic engagement with textiles has grown and evolved:

As our work has evolved, so has the Stitched Voices blog. We feature contributions which deal with political textiles, broadly conceived, reflecting on their societal, pedagogical and academic value from a number of different perspectives. Guest posts are very welcome (please, contact us if you have an idea).

We hope you enjoy exploring this archive of textile experiences.