Compositie in Zwart-Wit 235x165 cm.jpg

Hand embroidered specials

Besides of many series and commissions, Barbara designed some special, autonomous, hand embroidered works. Her inspiration for these works comes from very different sources.

  • Line drawing shows a series of lines and numbers in black and white. What do they mean? The line drawing is one of the phases in a textile design process. The lines and numbers coincide with certain colours in textile production. This hand embroidered and enlarged version accentuates the subtle beauty of the usually unrecognised original design. The hand drawn lines and fields in various sizes and hand written numbers form a playfully organic and simultaneously abstract image.

The work Cells 1 refers to Antoni van Leeuwenhoek’s discoveries. In the black and white, hand-embroidered work, the original drawings by Antoni van Leeuwenhoek can be seen.
He was the first to discover that all organisms consist of cells and ‘dierkens’ [tiny animals]. His books from the 17th century with drawings of a wide range of cells from skin, hair, blood, plants and animals caused a shock of recognition within Barbara. As an artist who regularly works with textiles, she saw in the intricate structures of microscopic drawings clear similarities with the techniques and patterns underlying textile. The drawings, that do show some order but are not perfect, have the same organic character as textile works. Small irregularities clearly betray the human hand.

In Composition in black and white, some visual elements of binding are brought together. Binding, flowermotives and forms inspired by nature are combined with Arabic motives and fragments of the clothing of Japanese designer Issey Miyake. The work shows the different shades of colour made possible while working in black and white.

In After Rubens, the influence of the great Baroque master is highly visible. Color, clair-obscur and movement are merged into a twirling composition, reminding of the many ceiling fresco's Rubens made during the seventeenth century. 

Baseball is based on a photo from the US. Part of a baseball bat breaks off during a match and flies into the crowd. This work was hand embroidered in India over a period of four months, using five different shades of grey.

All the works were carefully embroidered by a company in New Delhi, India, that also specialises in executing designs for high end fashion labels like Armani and Dolce & Gabbana. Only men execute this special craft, inheriting the tips and tricks from father to son.