Artwork: Hybrid, 2022

by Katy Beinart

A collection of 5 permanent public artworks installed at Meadow Rise, Braintree, Hybrid is the result of research conducted in the Warner Textile Archive and the development of ideas through the workshops held in spring 2019. The artworks celebrate the silk weaving industry that has shaped the development of Braintree as it is known today. The history of the town and the community can be traced through the development of the weaving and textile industry.

The artworks represent the cards used in the jacquard looms and translation between pattern card and pattern. The ideas for patterns were developed in workshops using natural inks made from plants to print patterns based on local plants. The title, Hybrid, refers to both the mix of patterns from different parts of the world which are held in the archive, and to processes of growing plants.

The sculptural works are created in the form of the jacquard loom cards which translate the pattern from process to completed pattern in the fabric. Made of steel which is shot blasted to give a stabilised ‘corten’ finish over time, as the cards weather the finish develops fully to give an even red-brown colour. They are positioned to form a fragmented sundial so that as the light passes through the punched design the shadows of the pattern are revealed on the path.

The work was commissioned by Countryside Properties. Thanks to Alison Turnbull and PMF Fabrication.