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Clare Spender

I am fascinated by fabric, how a flat piece of woven fibre can be changed by binding, distorting, dyeing, boiling, folding, how its structure can be changed so dramatically to the point it is unrecognisable.

During my master's degree I questioned many of my making methods and began to explore different pathways linking my then current role as Conservation Assistant. I began to use dust collected from different objects within my textiles.

Dust has now become part of my making process when creating textiles or site-specific projects. I use dust in much the same way as I would use a printing or stitching technique. This is a material that can be applied, stitched and bound within the fabrics I use.

But it is also more than just a material: this dust bound within my work connects me and my making process directly to the past, whether this is yesterday’s dust, dust removed from an object that has not been cleaned for many years, or even that found under floorboards that have not been lifted for hundreds of years.

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