Very early this morning and after nine intense days of frantic sewing and knitting, I made my way with the guys from the UK Tar Sands Network to Canada House to protest against the Canada Europe Energy Summit which brought together Canadian ministers and heads of big oil companies planning how to push highly polluting oil onto the world. Ironically, there was also an exhibition on embroidery happening at the same time within Canada House so they were surrounded by fabric from all angles.
I created a fabric oil spill that would seem like it was spilling out of the building scattered with dead animals, toxic waste and a big stitched oil refinery. I think that often the best way to get peoples attention is in the most visual way possible which also acts as a way to soften the blow for serious subject matter.
It was an installation as well as a performance piece that lasted just over an hour and caught the attention of all the people arriving for the meeting. We thought that by placing the oil spill on every doorway, it would create an inconvenient obstacle and truth to those entering.
It was an amazing collaboration to be involved in and really highlighted some important issues through the medium of felt and wool.
Here’s the photos by Scott Cadman and Bradley Garrett and a fantastic video by You & I Films.