Marking a 25-year collaborative relationship between Royal Academician and printmaker Barbara Rae and Dovecot Studios, Peel Sound Ice is a tapestry inspired by Rae’s body of work The Northwest Passage.
Rae is recognised for her intuitive and expressive use of colour, and the connections she makes between people and landscape. Making three journeys over a period of four years to the Northwest Passage in the Arctic Region, the artist followed in the footsteps of her namesake, the Scottish explorer John Rae. From her starting point on John Rae’s home isle of Orkney, Rae travelled to Greenland and Canada, voyaging through some of the most inhospitable places on earth to capture a landscape that is ever-changing and suffering from the devastating effects of global climate change and increasing human interaction.
Peel Sound Ice is inspired by an iconic image from this exploration of The Northwest Passage. The print from which the tapestry has been derived is just 28cm square and contains an unusual palette for Rae of deep pinks and metallic silvers. The tapestry is a beautiful and sensitive rendering of the image, and is unlike any tapestry that Dovecot weavers have created with Rae. The image becomes monumental due to the increase in scale, and the translation from print to tapestry evokes the textures and subtitles of the original work. A timely piece, Peel Sound Ice demonstrates the creative relationship between artist and weavers.
Peel Sound Ice is currently included in Dovecot’s curated selection of works for Collect 2021, international art fair for contemporary craft and design, online until 26 March 2021.