barbara franc upcycles old textiles into patchwork animal sculptures

barbara franc upcycles old textiles into patchwork animal sculptures

BARBARA FRANC REPURPOSES A COLLECTION OF OLD AND VINTAGE TEXTILES

 

London-based artist Barbara Franc thoughtfully constructs animal sculptures made of discarded materials like metal, textiles and everyday objects like kitchen utensils or guitar strings, among others. Titled Shaggy Dogs and other Fabric Creatures, her latest series repurposes a large collection of old and vintage textiles. 

 

‘As a sculptor, I continually enjoy playing with different media and exploring what they can do for me,’ said Baraba Franc. ‘I’ll often get the gem of an idea for a new piece by just picking up a piece of discarded metal, for example, a jam jar lid might turn into a flower head or part of a cat! I might have scraps of lead sheet, which I’ll start to ‘stitch’ together, and they start to transform into the idea of making a corset out of this soft, malleable metal.’

barbara franc upcycles old textiles into patchwork animal sculptures

 

PATCHWORK DOGS, HARES AND RATS 

 

Fascinated by the shapes and forms of animals, Barbara Franc uses them as inspiration for her pieces. Her sculptures use wire as the base, suggesting a three-dimensional drawing. She continues to cover the metal structure with recycled materials, giving them a second life. 

 

‘I enjoy working with different gauges of wire and wire netting as they respond very directly and immediately to my ideas, and it becomes like drawing in three dimensions,’ Franc continued. ‘I’ll often work on the form first without a rigid armature supporting the wire, this gives me a greater freedom to change the posture of the sculpture and keep it feeling alive. When I’ve decided on how I want it to stand, I’ll then thread in a stiffer wire to become the armature. I can emphasize certain lines with the use of resin and different gauges of wire, some pieces I leave in their metallic finish and others I color using enamel or clear plastic glass paints.’

barbara franc upcycles old textiles into patchwork animal sculptures

 

For the Shaggy Dogs series, the artist used her own pet as inspiration, stating he models for her frequently. The sculptures have been covered in her own daughter’s old trousers, a friend’s old curtains, and her grandmother’s old tapestry among other textiles. The patchwork series also includes a hare and two rats. 

barbara franc upcycles old textiles into patchwork animal sculptures

 

Most of the one-off pieces are created for private or corporate commissions, and she is represented by several galleries. The artist says she’s open to any work inquiries, ‘If you would like some personal treasured objects, that normally sit in drawers, to have a new purpose and to be seen every day, please get in touch.’

barbara franc upcycles old textiles into patchwork animal sculptures

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