Beth Thompson

Tufting Study

Media: Wool, Nylon, Monks Cloth, Latex, Cotton
Size: 120 x 160cm
Year: 2020

Prior to the coronavirus pandemic, I went through a period of feeling displaced, moving homes frequently and yet no desire to settle. However, at the news of the lockdown rules and subsequent infantilisation of the nation, I found myself experiencing trauma symptoms and was forced to find comfort where possible. I began to nest within the place I had landed and returned to more embodied ways of working, such as using paint and clay. I would then use these quickly expressed marks that held my anxiety and explore them through the long process of tufting.

The varied steps of tufting allowed the ebbs and flows of my trauma response to complete their cycle. From the harsh punching and cutting of wool with my tufting gun, where wool would be spat out like a disgusted bodily function, to the soft caress of gluing down the backing material that would then provide a layer of protection, much like skin. Here my trauma cycle had completed. I had explored the highs and lows of my trauma symptoms and at the end had a comforting relationship to my domestic object which symbolised my journey.

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Copyright © 2020 Beth Thompson