Inspiration for Mapping the Future


“Maps define the future of how we see the world because they give us information that we then react to”  (Prof Jerry Brotton)

Textile Forum South West (TFSW) is a contemporary ‘textile hub’ for the Southwest. This organization was set up to promote and develop textiles in all forms for the educational, cultural and economic benefit of the region. It is a point of exchange for people who live making, thinking or talking textiles.

This exhibition’s development began with a successful conference Maps define the future: where are you now? held at SCAT in March 2011. The conference ranged through talks from a map-maker surveyor, historical tapestry maps, maker networks, mapping through the internet, artist interpretations as well as activities and discussions – an eclectic mix of inspirations and ideas for artists to journey forward.

This exciting Brewhouse exhibition builds on the Textile Forum South West’s previous collaborations with Viewpoint, Plymouth College of Art and Walford Mill, Dorset . The aim is to showcase the talents of the TFSW membership and over thirty artists south west artists will be participating.

TFSW is passionate about the issues of mapping and networking.  As inspiration the following ideas were suggested for artists to consider for artworks to show:

Maps are as much to do with philosophy as geography. They are not two-dimensional pictures of the world but windows on to a subtle and complex world-view.

Maps can show connections between people and places, there can also be gaps and edges and unknowns. The medieval cartographer’s phrase for the unknown was ‘Here be Dragons’.

Maps can be highly selective and show geographical places, psychological places, social places and economic places.

Places are not static.

In response to these concepts, the work in the exhibition includes those inspired by such varying themes as personal journeys, the landscape, history, through to ambitious networking of the sounds of making. Likewise the artists utilize a whole range of experimental techniques to convey their ideas. These include delicate hand stitch, felt making, quilting, collage, knitting, sculpture as well as digital media. A fascinating, thought provoking and stimulating mix of work to share!


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