Catherine Lewis is an artist who is a textile specialist but with a practice that encompasses a wide range of media and techniques. She is also a printed textile and surface pattern design lecturer with over 20 years of teaching experience in the UK.
After graduating from Chelsea college of Art, where she specialised in design for printed textiles, Catherine went to work for the Welsh couture fashion team at Charles and Patricia Lester in Abergavenny. Here she honed her skills in textile dyeing, screen printing and the fascinating techniques of devore, discharge printing and shibori pleating.
In 2003 she set up and ran Context, a textile gallery, workshop and design agency, to exhibit and promote the work of established artists and designer makers alongside recent Welsh graduates; exhibiting at international trade fairs and exhibitions. At the same time she was responsible for the digital print facility within Cardiff Metropolitan University, researching the impact of digital technologies on creative textile practice and production.
Her experience means that she has a good knowledge of contemporary developments within creative textile design, as well as being a ‘hands on practitioner’.
She has more recently completed a Masters degree in contemporary fine art practice, developing the conceptual elements and her practical skills repertoire to include papermaking and casting, video and photographic work (including cyanotype onto cloth), bookmaking and natural materials for dyeing and printmaking.
Important themes persist and underpin her practice: environmental sustainability, commodification and globalisation, memory, participation and process. She utilises collected images, objects, memories and texts to make visual the hidden connections, complex processes and personal histories that make up simple, everyday products we often take for granted in our increasingly globalised and disposable society.
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