Sunday, 27 July 2014

The Tapestry begins

The idea of telling my life story in the style of the Bayeux tapestry came to me when Steph and I visited Bayeux whilst staying in Honfleur in September 2012.

The famous tapestry depicting the Norman invasion of Britain in 1066 combines figurative images (the events depicted), symbolic images (around the borders), and written text (the Latin commentary), all mediated via a popular representational technology of the time -- embroidery. I copied this section of it from a postcard, and found it fun and challenging to draw and also intriguing as a story-telling form that can carry all sorts of intuited visual and textual messages as well as its surface narrative.Just what I needed for a retirement project, except I don’t embroider. Well, I thought, Grayson Perry probably doesn’t embroider either but he’s still done tapestries so what the hell I’ll just draw them.

It’s taking me longer than I thought it would, but I’m finding it enthralling. Chronologies get a bit mixed up in some of them, but the memories they invoke while I’m researching and doing them are rich and satisfying. Thanks to everyone who appears in them (recognisably or otherwise) for being in the story.

Wonder what the ending will be? (Although, like the original, I/we may never know).

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