Fathoming the depths
In the early twenty-first century, creative practice uses textiles to project a voice into the world and to inform on issues of importance. Fresh and salt: messages in stitched textiles was an exhibition of 12 stitched textile banners, which used a combination of image and text in accordance with W. J. T. Mitchell's Picture Theory, to transform published and scientific advice into informative designs about the environmental and social issues of water in the Sydney Basin. The public design
... t simultaneously reflected on the deep ecology of water, recycling and the water cycle. Three different locations exhibited the stitched textile banner exhibition and collected questionnaire responses to the document that proposes that 'An understanding of information design and audience comprehension in an exhibition setting can inform the textile's ability to communicate an environmental message, particularly about water.' This paper documents the use of textiles as a message medium, how a theoretical framework and design theories can inform information design using textiles, and the serendipitous results of analysis of the textile medium in order to deliver the subtle nuances of an environmental message. 'Great to see people using recycled materials as the source of their art/designs. We need to, as artists and designers, become sustainable and aware of our wastefulness,' this statement was made by an anonymous respondent at the Sydney Quilt and Craft Show Darling Harbour, in June 2008. The research informed the development of a textile design exhibition entitled: Fathoming the depths: informative textiles. This exhibition of five textiles used the sensory power of transparency and fluidity of the material adding to the context of the social and environmental issues: the politics of water.