Photograph of Ruth Singer

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29 August 2016

Textile artist Ruth Singer has won the Fine Art Quilt Masters competition at the Festival of Quilts 2016, the largest quilt festival in Europe, with a piece inspired by Victorian women criminals.

Criminal Quilts: Hanging is part of a series of work inspired by archive photographs from Staffordshire Records Office which Ruth came across during her research for a commission for Shire Hall Gallery in 2012. A series of six small Criminal Quilts were commissioned and purchased by Shire Hall Gallery, Stafford, in 2012 and are now on display adjacent to the historic court room which inspired them.

Textile by Ruth Singer

Ruth Singer, Criminal Quilts: hanging

In this piece she has used  naturally-dyed silk organza in layers with reverse appliqué and hand embroidery. Each leaf has two layers and the layers are suspended in front of one of the archive photographs from Staffordshire Records Office.

Textile by Ruth Singer

Ruth Singer, Criminal Quilts (detail)

Ruth began her career working in museum education and curatorial roles before switching to textiles in 2005. Since then she has published three sewing books, exhibited widely around the UK and presented an acclaimed solo exhibition, Narrative Threads, at the National Centre for Craft and Design in 2015, of which this piece was part. 

Criminal Quilts: Hanging will be on show at the Knitting & Stitching Show in London, Dublin and Harrogate in October - November 2016.

Read more about Ruth Singer here