Archives for posts with tag: workshops

Textile artist Lone Helliwell meets poet Anne Dauber

Textile artist Lone Helliwell met poet Anne Dauber recently to discuss the format for the Olympic Textile Art Workshops.

Anne has supplied photographs of the barn and area that inspired her poem the Great Grey Barn.

Participants will be invited to use both these and words from the poem to inspire their own work.

Lone has set up a series of 2 hour sessions during which people will be invited to create 5″ squares using a variety of textile techniques.

The following dates are for workshops held at NeST gallery, 25 Newgate, Barnard Castle.

Tuesday 12th June 1.30 – 3.30p.m.

Friday 15th June 2 – 4p.m.

Friday 13th July 2 – 4p.m.

To book a place e-mail: or tel: 07413 101014

People wishing to submit textile squares without attending workshops can do so by sending them together with name, address and contact details to:

Judith Lesley Marshall, Winning Words Textile Installation, c/o  NeST gallery, 25 Newgate, Barnard Castle, Co. Durham, DL12 8NG by Saturday 21st July 2012.

Remember to include brief information about the techniques used and the parts of the poem depicted in the square.  All squares will be considered for inclusion in the final installation which will tour village halls and community spaces as of October 2012.

For those of you who missed the poem first time round, please read on:

The great grey barn where the cows once lived

lies empty now.

Straw abandoned like

an unmade bed,

the hollow which was, for those blackened months, their Winter womb

lies cold.


I passed your barn

every day and saw your bovine stare,

snug within the parameters of your stone house,

high pillows of dense packed snow.


Monochrome scene from the window,

hills creased by rocks

full stopping the landscape.

My eyes rest on the hush and linger.

Desolate, dank.  Lie still.  No rush.

But the Winter comes and goes, as it pleases.


High on the hills now

dawdling away the afternoon

their great backsides

sodden, slapped

with the soil from a sepia Winter


Your faces staring back through the grills on the broad gate

crushing the cud, your insolent eyes watching me shiver.


Now, I idly watch at you from my kitchen window

while you come to visit, calf in tow,

eyes wide with looking at

the machinery of my life

and all that I need, just to be able to eat.

While you chew in my face,

rubbing it in.

The nettles around your hooves flattened

as you tread between

the saucers of marsh marigold.


I am glad.


Cow in the Great Grey Barn


NeST has a history of working with local poets to promote the gallery as a ‘surprising space’ for poetry.  We currently have a selection of pamphlets from Mudfog press which complement the theme of the current exhibition and Felicity Manning will give a reading from her new collection Long Held Notes on Sunday 4th March at 3p.m.

In the meantime the project steering group have been busy formulating plans for delivering the Winning Words project through NeST.  Members of the group include representatives from local schools, media and youth groups.

Barnard Castle is participating in level 2 of the national project which encourages members of the local community to celebrate 2012 by creating a local poetry installation.

Written material for this artwork will be gathered through poetry workshops and a local competition.  Winning entries will be exhibited as window vinyls in town centre shops and the overall winner will be incorporated into a textile installation.

As mentioned previously the idea is to use a poetry code to knit the winning poem into a textile picture which can be displayed in village halls, school and business receptions etc.  People will be able to buy into the legacy by purchasing postcards of the finished piece.

Earlier this week I visited Buttons & Bows shop in Barnard Castle to discuss sourcing local wool in rainbow colours.  As we need a heavy weight wool in order to knit on extreme needles I have hit my first hurdle.

Owner Sally Nicholls tells me that orange and yellow wools are rare so we may have to consider dyeing our own.  Sally was very helpful, gave me  a list of knitters, weavers and suppliers to contact.

If you know of anyone who has a spare fleece or two or balls of wool in requisite colours, please get in touch.  You can e-mail me on or tel: 07413 101014.

Mudfog poetry at NeST

Mudfog poetry at NeST