Lacemaking has gone all organic this month. Here at Adventures HQ I have been captivated by the lace art work of Hungarian artist Agnes Herczeg. Herczeg studied textile conservation at the Hungarian University of Fine Arts and was always interested in learning about “almost-forgotten” techniques. Herczeg makes pictures out of lace that move away from the traditional lace collars and table coverings, but in a quite different way to other lace artists that I’ve looked at. I’ve explored the work of a lot of lace artists creating something really ultra new and modern in their work. I feel that Herczeg is going in an opposite direction, in a really good way.
Herczeg says, Over the years I have learned many traditional handicraft techniques. I have extensively studied the crafts of embroidery and lacemaking (needle lace, pillow lace, macramé, braiding). In my work I only use natural materials of vegetable origin: yarns, threads, textiles as well as tree branches, roots fruits, seeds…I combine various techniques in my works, thus traditional handicraft is complimented with natural wood and ceramic material to form the image.
In an interview last year for creativeroom4talk.com, Herczeg talked about what inspires her in her work. When asked about her own favourite designer Herczeg spoke about being inspired by the artists of the prehistoric age, who used the resources of nature, who painted the cave with mineral-paint, who shaped his sculptures out of clay, who knew how exactly how to use all natural resources. You can really see this influence in her work. Her use of colour is amazing and I find I’m particularly drawn to her works in reds and oranges and yellows, perhaps because autumn is now upon us.
I sometimes feels that traditional lacemaking can come across as something quite prim and at times overly intricate and floral. For me Herczeg’s lace pieces remain intricate, whilst at the same time taking lacemaking back to something quite raw and natural and I love that. It helps me to remember that traditional handicrafts go back way further than we often think about. Each piece seems to say so much. I find her work really quite mesmerizing. If you’d like to see lots more of her fascinating pieces do have a look at Herczeg’s website or follow her Facebook page.
Tracey Wright is an NHS Recovery Worker by day & trying to be creative at all other times! Tracey is a member of the Aragon Lacemakers, who work to keep the making of handmade Bedfordshire lace alive by learning & making lace together. Tracey was taught to make handmade bobbin lace at school as a child & has returned to this craft in the past few years. Tracey is interested not only in learning about the history of lacemaking & its vast range of styles & techniques to contribute to preserving this traditional craft, but also in exploring how lacework is being used in art & craft today in new & exciting ways to show it is still fresh & contemporary.