For a dyed in the wool crafter with a background in costume design, nothing could be more attractive than a wild and wooly tour through the Wool Modern exhibit at the La Galleria in London with the curator, Charlotte Lurot before its official opening last night. The Campaign for Wool's patron HRH The Prince of Wales opened the show as part of the Wool Week festivities.
If you are lacking in creative motivation then head to Wool Modern for a flash of inspiration that will have your running for your knitting needles/loom/sewing machine/felting needle (delete as appropriate) with all due haste.
The exhibit is a mix of high fashion, sculpture, furniture, and installation art. Knitting, weaving, tailoring and felting all feature with legendary designers like Vivienne Westwood, Alexander McQueen and Thierry Mugler rubbing wool-clad elbows with young designers like Thom Browne, Kinder Aggugini and JW Anderson.
And this is not wool as the stereotypical tweed-wearing, wool jumper-toting traditionalist would recognise it. It's wool re-invented.
Wool can even be strange little needle-felted sculptures like the piece entitled "Ernie" by Bethany Jen Fancher. Personally, I found that the strange little sculpture put me in mind of an internal organ on legs. I have no idea if the artist meant Ernie to be evocative of a lower intestine, but the inclusion of such a piece shows that this exhibit understands that wool is diverse. Because wool is a fibre unique in its ability to transform itself.
It accepts dye readily.
It can be felted - when you stab it with a barbed needle, when you rub it with water and soap and when you wash it in hot water in your washing machine.
It can be knit
It can be woven
It repels water
It can be lightweight or strong beyond belief
Wool Modern communicates that wool is what you make of it. What will you make?