An art student from West Nottinghamshire College has described her pride at seeing her work featured in a prestigious exhibition that is expected to attract 25,000 visitors.
Ellie-Rose Duffin, 19, submitted a mixed-media piece she produced at college to the Harley Gallery in Welbeck’s 2019 Open Exhibition – and was thrilled when it was selected by judges.
Her work, called Lichen – named after the moss-like or fungi-type organism that can grow on trees – is one of 110 pieces currently on display at the exhibition, chosen out of almost 550 entries.
Ellie-Rose, from Warsop, chose a small piece of broken branch with lichen on it, and focused in particular on the textures and colours.
Her final piece combines textile and print-making processes including 3D medium, screen-printing and embroidery techniques using an abstracted macro viewpoint.
Ellie-Rose said: “There was just something about the texture of the lichen that fascinated me, so I thought it’d be interesting to re-create it in 3D textile form.
“I made it out of puff-binder, which is like a paint that you heat it up and it expands.
“I then hand-died some thread and French-knotted it, which made really nice lichen-type shapes.
“It took about four hours to make, all in one go.
“I didn’t think it was going to work in the beginning, but I’m really happy with how it came out.
“All the techniques are what I’ve learnt at college.
“I didn’t really know anything about puff-binder or how to dye fabrics before my studies, so the course has definitely taught me a lot.”
Ellie-Rose submitted her work to the gallery for consideration and was ecstatic to discover it had been chosen by its expert curators and trustees to appear at the biennial exhibition, which features works from artists in a wide range of wall-based media, including paint, print and photography, from keen amateurs to professionals.
She continued: “I couldn’t believe it – I was so happy I almost cried.
“It was just a really great moment. I’d never had my work exhibited before, so having this opportunity is absolutely amazing.
“There are so many fantastic pieces of work on display at the exhibition – and I’m really proud to say that mine is part of it.”
The teenager has applied to various universities to study either surface design, jewellery design, or decorative arts, from September.
Her ambition is to become a professional artist or work in the fashion or jewellery-design industries.
The exhibition runs until March 24.