Diana Harrison

(1950-)
Diana Harrison's recent solo exhibitions have included: Traces in Cloth', Festival of Quilts [touring], NEC Birmingham, Alexandra Palace, London & Harrogate (2017); 'Working in Cloth', Crafts Study Centre, Farnham (2016); 'Cloth, Layered, Worn and Wasted', Adam Mickiewicz University, Poznan, Poland (2014); and 'Diana Harrison Art Quilts', Museum of Arts and Crafts, Itami, Osaka, Japan (2006).


Harrison also recently exhibited as part of 'Quilts: 1700 - 2010', at the V&A from 20 March to 4 July 2010. Her works 'Box 1' & 'Box 2' were made for this exhibition. With inspiration taken from the shape of found cardboard boxes, and the size resembling that of a bed quilt.


In an interview with V&A (2010), Harrison explains the making of the works 'Box 1' & 'Box 2':
"My work is very much about the cloth, the materials, the making - the relationship between the print and the stitching. I will start off by bonding together the fabrics - in this case it's cotton on the underneath, there is an interfacing in the middle with bondaweb and a gluey sort of substance and silk on the top. So I'm making a sort of a sandwich, a quilt. The the whole piece is stitched together. The cloth is all pre-dyed black, dyed by myself so that I know what it will discharge to.


I do think it's one of the most difficult things in the world to do - to embed a contemporary quilt within the beautiful, historic pieces that are known and loved. And contemporary quilt makers are not necessarily following exactly in that tradition and nor am I. But at the same time, I think that it's important that we are recognised as well as the makers from earlier times. We are working under incredibly different circumstances that are modern day and therefore you will engage in modern day making as well. You know a lot of printing is now all going over to digital printing and that's going to make a huge difference to the sort of patterning and cloths that are going to be coming out."