Dear Mum

Julie Devereux wafta twenty five + image

Techniques: Collage, free motion machine stitch
Materials: Postage stamps, envelopes, canvas, cotton thread
Dimensions (cms): H – 70, W – 64
Photographer: Terry Devereux

Family history often influences my artwork. This is my way of continuing to pass down history and stories for future generations, to have a sense of who people really are and share their legacy.

My parents saved and collected stamps to be sold for charities. I had a bag of these in my shed. They were still on fragments of envelopes to be soaked off. How could I repurpose these in an artwork?

I have collaged these envelopes and stamps from the 1960s with the Queen’s portrait onto canvas with free motion stitching. I chose to do the Queen’s portrait as it was on these stamps. She was young and I wonder if she imagined she would still be the reigning Queen of England in 2022, her Platinum Jubilee year? I wonder how far these stamps have travelled? If only they could reveal what was inside the envelopes. Were they letters to or from loved ones keeping in touch as was done back then with no internet?

My mother admired the Queen, as she was of a similar generation. Mum was a wonderful letter writer and as the stamps came from her I decided to name this piece ‘Dear Mum’.

Family history or a special story often influence Julie’s artwork. She uses natural fibres or recycles and repurposes material where she can. Whether it be old blankets, calico core sample bags, x-ray film or recently postage stamps. Natural dyeing and botanical printing have been a strong part of her work.

Wafta twentyFIVE + crossover
on-line catalogue

includes essay by Erin Coates, Wafta history, images and statements from artists on the 42 art-works exhibited

wafta exhibition catalogue