Julies challenge was to incorporate some of Australian Photographer Reece Scannell’s fabric into a contemporary and personalised art work. Having chosen panels from the ‘naked men ‘series, she became engrossed in the origins and context of the photographs. Julie had chosen Michelangelo Buonarroti’s 16th century sculpture of ‘The Dying Slave’.
Material:Incorporating Reece Scannell screen printed, Hand painted fabric with Kraftkolor fabric paints Hand stencilled and printed with fabric inks. 100% Cotton batting.
Technique: All cotton, Machine pieced, appliqued and quilted.
A COLLABORATION OF TEXTILE ART & PHOTOGRAPHY
Rock Paper Stitch
The Dying Slave
The popularity of such sculptures and the vast amount of imagery and written conjecture about the artist and his work/faith/life was somewhat distracting, so Julie did what many undergraduates do in the Louvre Paris where they were photographed and began large pencil sketches of the Dying slave.
These became elements of her final composition, as painted and stitched figures. Michelangelo, like his Italian arch rival Leonardo, was labelled the archetypal ‘Renaissance man’, because the genius (of both) was immense.
Michelangelo was a prodigious sculptor, architect, painter, engineer and poet and it was his poetry that references some of the personal, life-long turmoils, such as being torn between his abundant love of God and the great burden and suffering that he held God responsible for. It was believed most likely stem from his internal struggle with his forbidden sexuality and his extreme poles of emotion.
Yet perhaps Michelangelo’s intense and significant emotional range enabled him to feel acutely and to express great honesty, emotion and beauty through his art. Reference to two of Michelangelo’s poems are illustrated in Julie’s textiles,as both decorative elements and to give context and connection between his great art and his mind.
Scannell’s screen printed photo shows two chained slaves as they express highly contrasting emotions. ‘The Dying Slave’ is a youthful handsome perhaps near death, or eternally sleeping figure and the other, ‘The Rebellious Slave’ a coarser man whose body is twisted in a seemingly violent and writhing struggle. Known collectively as ‘The Captives’, the sculptures show figures struggling to free itself, as if from the bonds of the rock in which it is lodged. The works give a unique insight into the sculptural methods that Michelangelo employed and his way of revealing what he perceived within the rock. Unfinished, he thus left the marks of his tools clearly visible, as traces of his battle with tough raw material, with which he worked relentlessly in his quest to release the figure from within the stone.
The statues were intended as a splendid funeral monument for Pope Julius II, but the massive project was never realised as Michelangelo had envisioned. Further slaves, in even less complete state hold further secrets and insight to the genius of this man.
Grounded in naturalism, the inner dialogues of Julie’s life’ journey are evident in her art and the two are inseparable. Together with a love of fabric and stitch, Julies work is embedded in the natural world and the Fine Art of drawing painting and printmaking, the disciplines of Design and the Crafts of textiles have shaped the ways she uses stitch, threads, colours and cloth. They are sparse, refined and without elaboration. Those inner conversations become unique, meaningful and highly personalised, expressive art works. A lifetime of bulging pockets, collecting the discarded, the used or broken, saving the treasure of every walk, documenting with drawing and photography; these are evidenced in her recent professional practices, but inherent in all is the beauty of nature. In the art and textiles of Julie Haddrick, nothing is unnecessary.
Her disciplined approach features careful designing and restrained use of colour, technique and materials. Julie embraces the Japanese aesthetic of “Wabi Sabi’” that values transience, imperfection and the impermanent. She finds greatness in the overlooked details; the grace of ageing, imperfection and of beauty in decline. Julies’ Wabi Sabi is outdoors in quiet, insignificant and inwardly oriented places and her treasure is in the discarded; a feather, a stick, a shard of china. Julie hand dyes, prints and paints fabrics, often combining/ layering them with vintage cloth.
Her stitching is measured, decorative and purposeful and her thread rich textiles are complex and quite unique. A multi award winning artist, Julie is passionate about art, textiles and teaching, exhibiting widely; her art quilts touring in juried exhibitions worldwide. Recently, Julie was awarded the acclaimed Rajah 2018 award for her contribution to quilting in Australia. An annual award given by Expertise Events, Julie is the 13 th recipient of this award. An accomplished and popular art-quilt teacher, Julie has published 40+ patterns; distributed through ‘Haddrickonfabric’ She is a qualified secondary teacher of Visual Art and Design with 35 years’ experience in that field.
Her quilt teaching of 18 years has encompassed an art approach to fabrics.
Her students embrace new ideas and the opportunity to further develop their technical and creative expression as well as upgrading skills in the art and designing that underpins contemporary, modern and art quilt making.
She has been fortunate to curate and take a quilt exhibition to USA in 2015 and was engaged in teaching whilst in Houston Texas. Following this, Bernina Japan engaged Julie Haddrick as a teacher and guest artist for their 2016 Tokyo, Fukuoka and Osaka quilt shows, which was a major highlight of her teaching schedule. Julie enjoys local Australian and New Zealand quilting community utilise her judging, public speaking and various art textiles teaching expertise, and she continues her service at a state guild level as a Judging panel and exhibition jurist.