Bridget Bailey’s flora and fauna artworks and sculptures in textile and fibre combine intricate making with the down-to-earth approach to life and death of an allotment gardener. She investigates myriad tiny details: the growth-rhythm in a tangle of grass; the particular posture of a dead butterfly’s legs. She says:
‘Allotment gardening is more about how nature works than how it looks. Time spent there is an opportunity to observe less obvious relationships and life-cycles of plants and insects. The way I notice something through actually making a representation of it is a very intense form of observation.’
Bridget describes her making process as ‘interpreting’ nature – describing its qualities through translating it into other materials. These materials and techniques come from her textile and millinery background, taking on a new level of refinement in their context as artworks. Her recent work has been exhibited at jaggedart, Byard Art and Made London Marylebone.
Bridget studied textiles and made her first collection of millinery in 1984 for Jean Muir. She co-founded the Bailey Tomlin millinery brand, selling to international clients from Liberty’s to Saks Fifth Avenue between 1989 and 2010, when her practice turned towards sculpture.