About the piece:
With a background in woodwork, metal, ceramics, weaving, dressmaking, and even stained glass windows, Sophie consolidates her breadth of talent in these explosively colourful textile collages of animals and insects. She now lives in Kenya where she seeks inspiration from yjr wildllife all around her – namely some of the world’s most endangered species like elephants, lions, and rhinos. To create each piece she first sketches the animal onto the background canvas and then draws from a vast collection of decorative fabrics acquired from her travels around the world, to create a dense collage of colourful patchwork. The fabric collage is then detailed with a dense build-up of thread work, applied with a sewing machine, often referred to as thread painting. ‘Bonobo’s’ background is unbleached cotton canvas which Sophie has eco/botanical dyed, created by steaming the rolled canvas with African leaves inside for approximately 3 hours with a mordant, leaving the print of the leaves on the fabric by way of the tannins of the leaf. The bonobo itself is made by appliquéing cotton fabrics (Liberty tana lawn) and then thread painting the details of the animal with cotton thread using a free motion technique on my sewing machine. No bleach, no pen, no paint. All fabric and thread.
At least 50% of the proceeds from this sale will support the charitable work of David Shepherd Wildlife Foundation (DSWF) and our ground-based conservation partners across Africa and Asia.
Return to: Finalists 2021 / Wildlife Artist of the Year 2021