POD 5 ARTIST RESIDENCY 2024: Rachel Eardley

⁠⁠Designed by Pearce+, each of the five accommodation pods at East Quay have their own concept and story, reflecting the town, its culture, heritage, and future. Each year, Contains Art invites a different artist/maker/creative practitioner to use the interior of Pod 5 as their canvas, transforming it into an immersive artwork/installation for guests to enjoy year-round during their stay.

This year, artist and jeweller Rachel Eardley has created a mixed-media installation titled 'Loving your land', taking inspiration from the beautiful land of West Somerset, connecting the oak trees of the Quantocks with the coastline here in Watchet.

The space includes a painted 'wallpaper' motif on dusky pink, dotted with antique plates painted with snippets of the local landscape. Upstairs on the mezzanine level, Rachel has created a 'Stitching Snug', containing cushions embroidered with symbols of everyday life, along with a series of delicate wall hangings depicting local icons like Styles ice cream. Some of these hangings were made during a workshop led by Rachel, where participants embroidered together and shared ideas about community and the local landscape. To continue the process of sharing through making, guests are invited to add stitching to the fabric and bring their own tales to the space.

In Rachel's words:⁠
"I come from a craft background and work preliminarily as a jeweller, but also create work in textiles and make fine-line drawings too. My work has an illustrative theme running throughout it, drawing connections between objects, places and my desire to celebrate the everyday simple objects around us.⁠⁠ From the time spent making and designing objects, to their use in our daily lives, these things become mementos of the stories and memories they hold, both individually and within our communities. By bringing my own distinct style to everyday things, which have perhaps lost their purpose in these changing times, I reflect on all the beautiful things we already have, and try not to add more 'stuff' to our world."⁠

If you would like to learn more about Rachel and her work, please visit:

Image credit: Joe Horton


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