5 Katie Fassett, knitwear and l needlepoint designer, talks about his 3 work and his inspiration.

'I first began knitting when I came up to Scotland in the mid 19603. I had bought about twenty balls of the most beautiful Shetland wool in a huge range of natural colours; greens, browns, purples and yellows and I wanted to wear them. I taught myself to knit on the train on the way down to london. When I had finished the jumper I took it into Vogue and they loved it. I haven’t really looked back since as my work seemed to strike a chord with people. My book Glorious Colour sold 40,000 copies and encouraged all sorts of women, and men, to take up knitting.

Before, I had trained for six months as a painter in Boston and always painted bright colourful still lifes with a strong decorative element running through them. flow, whether it’s knitting, needle point or painting, there’s always this geometrical thread. My work isn’t just based on patterns, however, and l have designed jumpers and needlepoint featuring figures and animals.

1 But the most important part of my

._ work is colour; I love it because it

3 makes you feel great. it’s uplifting, it makes you feel cheerful and it’s good for the spirit. The colour in my work is influenced by all sorts of elements but especially by Scottish landscape. When I think of the colour of lichen, moss and heather . . .

llowadays women, especially, wear too little colour. In the past they’d pride themselves on wearing wonderful shades but now they wear too much black. You walk into a designer store and it’s like, who died? ' I like black but it’s a colour which

doesn’t commit itself. People who

wear it don’t want to express something about themselves.

You know, I have to do something creative all the time or I dry up totally.

I take my knitting every where i go,

even to a party, because if I’m not ; working on a project, I go crazy. I get nervous twitches.’ (Beatrice Colin) ltaffe Fassett’s The Striped .lar Tapestries, woven by the Edinburgh Tapestry Company, are or. show at the gogal Museum of Scotland until 28

e .

:— Crossing paths

Two exhibitions at the Edinburgh Botanics contrast the work of white and Aboriginal Australian women. Beatrice Colin discovered their diverse portrayal of the natural


When Captain Cook landed in Botany Bay in 1770, he was accompanied by a team of naturalists led by Sir Joseph Banks. They found a huge variety of hitherto unknown flora and fauna including a plant which grew in profusion which was named after Banks; the Banksia. They also came face to face with an indigenous nomadic people whose lives were governed by ritual and ancient traditions.

The Botanic Gardens in Edinburgh is showing Celia Rosser’s fragile watercolours of 52 species of Banksia beside Seed of Memory, a selection of paintings by Aboriginal women to produce a fascinating friction between westemised and indigenous art from Australia.

Aboriginal art is accepted as the oldest anform known on the planet and all Aborigines are taught to express themselves in a visual way from a very young age. Since 1977 workshops and educational programmes have been

natural world is an integral part of their art. ‘We are painting as we have always done.’ says Aboriginal leader. Galarrwuy Yanupingu. ‘To demonstrate our continuing link with our country and the rights and responsibilities we have to it. . .we own this country and the land owns us.‘ The Botanics‘ selection of over

f twenty works by women artists from I the Utopia region of Australia is

taking place in central Australia to help

Aboriginies intergrate into the modern world. As well as literacy classes. new artistic media such as batik, watercolour, painting on canvas and on wrecked cars were introduced. The results are astonishing and have not only generated income for the communities through the sale of work. but also revealed how traditional themes could be incorporated into highly individual contemporary work. The Aborigines‘ relationship with the

impressive. ranging in style from traditional dot-based depiction of Dreamings. the Aborigines‘ spiritual

link with the the time the earth was created associated with fruit and '; flowers, to figurative and abstract

work. Infused with a sense of spirituality and vibrant energy. the exhibition shows how each artist has found a personal means ofexpression. Some have found new freedom in a larger range of colours and instead of depicting Dreaming maps. paint

‘. {V I ‘9

Clifford Possum’s Iloney Ant Dreaming (1989)

abstractions of their whole world. Others have abandoned the traditional dot method and instead create linear work which relies on design to portray ' subject matter in a new way.

In complete contrast. Celia Rosser‘s life-size watercolours of Banksias are traditional botanical studies. From rust red to rapeseed yellow. the cone-shaped flowers are exotic and varied in shape. Each species was frozen during the , three months it took to complete. and each study is painted in immaculate ' detail with so much care you cart i almost smell the flower‘s spicy scent.

! Only the habitat of Australia links these two exhibitions. But they say a great deal about the nature of two

: cultures living in on the same land but 1 seeing the world with very different .cyes.

The Bunksius and Seed (if'rl'lwnunv are ; at the Botanical (Ian/ens. lit/inbuth from Sat 27 Nov—~30 Jun


lectures are listed by city, then alphabetically by subject.

Sarah Kemp Glasgow Film Theatre. Fri 26

Nov. liam. Free. Weekly Glasgow School !

of Art lecture. in this instance on dance as art; conflicting choreographies. Photographic Workshops Street Level Gallery. Sat 20 and Sun 21 Nov. 1—6pm. £45 (£35). Beginners black and white classes. Fees are inclusive of all materials. Voysey and ills Contemporaries English Department. Lecture Theatre (Room E 1.

Main Buiding) Glasgow University. Thurs i

18 Nov. 7.30pm. £3. A lecture by Gavin Stamp.

58 The List 19 November—2 December 1993

The Art of the 0aguerreotype Portrait Gallery. Wed 24 Nov. l2.45pm. Free. A lecture by James Berry.

American Documentary Photography Conference Room. Central Library. Tue 30 Nov. 7pm. Free. An illustrated talk by Colin Covers. education officer at Stills Gallery.

American Landscape Photography Conference Room. Central Library. Tue 23 Nov. 7pm. Free. An illustrated talk by Robin Gillanders.

Sir Joseph Banks - Georgian Entrepreneur of llatural lllstory Lecture Theatre. Royal Botanic Garden. Wed 1 Dec. 7.30pm. Free. A talk by Harold Carter on this great natural historian. Growth and Form Lecture Theatre. Royal Botanic Garden. Sat 27 Nov. 9.30am—6pm. £25 (£15/£5). Celebrating the relationship between art and science which D‘Arcy Wentworth Thompson first explored in 1917. the conference will cover a range of topics including structure and order and creative evolutionary

processes. The programme includes talks by Professor Martin Kemp. Dr Peter Clarke and Avice Harris.

Making the Purchase Grant Go Further Gallery of Modern Art. Mon 22 Nov. 12.45pm. Free. Richard Calvocoressi. the current keeper of collection. explains the tricks of the trade.

Mystic Marriage of St Catherine National Gallery. Fri 26 Nov. l2.45pm. Free. Michael Cassin discusses Poussin's painting.

0|dest Americans and their invaders - the llorth American Indian Conference Room. Central Library. Thurs 25 Nov. Noon. Free. A talk by Owen Dudley Edwards.

The Permanent Collection Gallery of Modern Art. Mon 29 Nov. 12.45pm. Free. A tour of the new hanging with assistant keeper Patrick Elliott.

0ulltlng Central Lending Library. Sat 20 Nov. 9.30am. Free. A demonstration of quilting. American-style. by the Edinburgh Quilters.

A Visitor’s Choice National Gallery. Fri 19 Nov. l2.45pm. Free. A talk by Rachel Barnes.