Internationally renowned textile artist Kaffe Fassett – and his new exhibition entitled ‘Colour’ – will come to Mottisfont this Autumn…
Southern Art Hub and one of the National Trust’s most interesting properties, Mottisfont, is gathering acclaim as one of the UK’s most relevant exhibition sites. The grande manor’s last owner, Maud Russell, was a lover of both art and artists and the current establishment has chosen to continue this metier.
Kaffe Fassett’s exhibition will showcase stunning works from his 50-year career at the forefront of the textile genre. Mottisfont will be transformed with pools of vibrant colour as a fitting backdrop for Kaffe’s distinctive knitwear, tapestry, quilts and more.
The artist’s bio is impressive. He is the only living textile artist ever to have had a one-man show featured at the Victoria and Albert Museum. In addition, he has produced a number of ‘How To’ books, lectures and workshops, as well as international tours. His exhibition at Mottisfont will be the National Trust’s first ever textile exhibition.
The show will feature over 70 pieces, carefully chosen by Kaffe to create an immersive world of colour. They will be accompanied by quotes from the artist about his inspirations, setting into context his passion for bold colours and styles. Indeed, Kaffe says:-
“I create in palettes of colour because that is my main obsession. This show is a series of rooms in colour groups, starting with neutral greys and fresh, blue and white combinations. Then a world of spring greens, from vegetable needlepoints to a patchwork of green prints. Sunny yellows are next, with knits, needlepoint and patchwork in lemons, ambers and primrose tones. Then we move on to a deep world of Islamic blues to create a cool pool of luminous cobalts, indigoes, purples and jade greens. We end with a celebration of rich red tones, from opera pink to scarlet and wine shades, with Russian and Oriental influences. Everything in this exhibition is to help others create exciting but low-tech textiles.”.
As you enter the gallery, you’ll be met with hand-painted vases, needlepoints and cushions in the first room, alongside a large screen decorated with a painting of chinaware. A vibrant armchair patterned with vegetables takes centre stage in the second, green-themed room, complemented by bright vegetable-themed cushions and carpets. The third room featuring deep blues and purples includes a stunning Persian stars quilt which will cover a whole wall of the gallery. This is complemented by other quilts in similar shades, knitted jackets and an oil painting. The final room of rich reds and pinks is also dominated by luxuriously patterned quilts, alongside bold knitted pieces.
On Thursday, 23rd November (6.30-7.30pm), Kaffe will be presenting a lecture with the intention of inspiring others ‘to create’. This will be held in Crosfield Hall, Romsey, and will highlight works from his latest projects, plus the artist’s own personal inspirations. The audience will be encouraged to think creatively in their own ways and to try out their own projects. The lecture will finish with a Q&A session and book signing.
To top off the exhibition, the Mottisfont shop will showcase colourful merchandise based on the artist’s work, alongside publications written by Kaffe himself. Mottisfont’s Christmas offering this year will be inspired by the Kaffe Fassett exhibition, celebrating the festive season with bright colour and sparkle. Statement Christmas trees, dramatic floral art, and vibrant decorations will delight the viewer, while outside there will be artist installations and celebrations of natural winter colours. All the Colours of Christmas runs from 25 November – 2 January 2018.
Art Today recommends viewing the entire house during the exhibition, including the hidden Boris Anrep mosaics (one of an Angel depicting Maud Russell, his long-term lover), the ancient crypt, and also the David Breuer-Weil colossal statue entitled ‘Alien’ in the gardens.
(See also our interview with David featured here: https://arttodaymagazine.com/galleries/43/interview-sculptor-david-breuer-weil).
[Credits: nationaltrust.org.uk/mottisfont; also see kaffefassett.com and brandonmably.com]
Kaffe Fassett Crosfield Hall Lecture: 23/11/17, 6.30-7.30pm, tickets £12, booking essential via 01794 344020.
Mottisfont/Kaffe Fassett ‘Colour’ Exhibition: 11am to 5pm daily. Normal property admission price only. (For visitors unable to access the second floor gallery, there are digital versions of exhibitions on iPads which are available on lower levels.).