'KINSHIP: a story woven into a tapestry of folklore, of ancestors, of love: knitted together,' is comprised of a series of hand-made, hand knitted wall hangings and sculptures are presented together to form a conversation about family ancestors and local folklore. Nettie Sumner aims to explore the revival of traditional craft as well as the re-emergence of ancient crafts. Her artworks reimagine ancestral forms of storytelling through knitting, weaving and tapestries, using current methodologies and contemporary contexts. Inspiration has been gathered from a range of craft artefacts including the Tristan Quilt (one of the oldest surviving quilts) and the Galloway Hoard of Viking objects as well as ancient bush art.
Her works are overreaching explorations of the ideas that ‘like produces like’ and as such all generations are connected. It is this ‘connectedness’ that provides the inspiration for Kinship. Through the generations crafts and creativity are passed on, perfected, changed, reinvented and reimagined by each generation. These include interpretations of quilts, tapestries, weavings and sculptures, created in copper wire, silver-plated wire and clay.
Sumner successfully graduated with a Diploma of Ceramics and an Advanced Diploma of Visual Arts and currently works as a wire textile artist and ceramicist from her creative studios in both Sussex Inlet and Bondi Beach. She hand knits wire pods, forms and vessels using a range of techniques, which she assembles and hangs so that each tells its own story; much as would be done when creating a textile tapestry or quilt. She hand builds pods, forms and vessels in dark earthy clays and tends to favour dry natural glazes which resonate with the landscape series, as well as metallic glazes which have a synergy with the wire sculpture. Typically she combines the pieces to include both the wire and the clay elements of the stories being told.