Acclaimed London-based textiles artist Emma Neuberg’s work is the subject of our latest exhibition in The Gallery – kicking off the start of our Textile Design Season.
Emma Neuberg is a British artist who trained in Printed Textiles at the Royal College of Art, gaining a studio-based PhD in the subject in 2000. Her work explores the language of fine art, textiles and the sequencing of these in digital media.
The exhibition opening saw students, staff, industry partners and members of the public explore the work on show, moving in between the vibrant panels of fabric that have taken over the centre of the space.
The mix of soft fabric textures, digital animations and visible brushwork alluded to Emma’s ethos of showcasing her thought process and multi-disciplinary approach to textiles and fine art.
Focusing on colour, light and resonance dynamics and how these vibrate and interrelate on the two-dimensional surface – the materials in the show are stitched, painted, drawn, printed, stretched and virtual. Each piece informing the next in a continuous cycle of development, progression and meaning.
The combination of new technologies with modernist traditions and intergenerational narratives creates a depth of sonority and story in Emma’s work that makes it an exciting and significant chapter in the development of western European traditions and the overlap between fine art and textiles.
Often with commercial practices like textile design, you don’t get to see the working drawings by the artist, but these images reveal the backdrop and thought process behind the textile pieces. — Emma Neuberg
Speaking of the genesis of her exhibition, Emma said: "Textiles in the UK are usually either presented in a very commercial context, or else as a niche craft.
"Over the years I’ve become increasingly frustrated with this, because I know that my own work falls somewhere between textiles and fine art and it was obvious to me that a lot of my contemporaries also needed their work to be exhibited in a space somewhere between craft and commercial design.
"I really want to delve into this curious space between textiles and fine art and give it a bigger public platform.
"My own solo show combines the textiles themselves with the designs and drawings behind them, alongside digital representations and animations of the digital patterns.
"Often with commercial practices like textile design, you don’t get to see the working drawings by the artist, but these images reveal the backdrop and thought process behind the textile pieces.
I’m also delighted that Emma Neuberg will work with textile design students here on a digital textile design project, encouraging creative uses of our industry standard digital equipment and software. — Paul Singleton, BA (Hons) Printed Textile Design and Surface Pattern programme leader
"They’re the foundation of my work and essential to the creative process, so I hope that people will take the same pleasure in viewing them that I took in creating them."
Paul Singleton, Programme Leader on our BA (Hons) Textile Design and Surface Pattern programme said: "Our students will have the opportunity to meet with textile design professionals such as Emma Neuberg and Timorous Beasties.
"I’m delighted that we have such a high calibre of designers visiting us in Plymouth to talk to our students about their careers and aspirations.
"I’m also delighted that Emma Neuberg will work with textile design students here on a digital textile design project, encouraging creative uses of our industry standard digital equipment and software."
Emma will also give a free public talk in our Studio Theatre on Wednesday 27 January from 5.30pm until 6.30pm, where she will give an overview of her practice and the work created for the show.
The exhibition runs from Saturday 9 January until Saturday 20 February 2016, (Monday-Friday 9am-5pm, Saturday 10am-1pm, closed Sunday). Free and open to all.
Photos by Dom Moore.