Sian O’Doherty – Weave Designer

Perceived Perceptions

Textiles can be a powerful medium for creating illusions enabling artists to design concepts that are different to reality. Sian has been drawn to creating a textile collection that incorporates optical illusions, whereby her creations at second inspection reveal themselves differently, and are not what they first seem.

Her initial inspiration came from Google earth images- drawing reference from the patterns and vibrant colours created by estuaries. Her Welsh heritage is also apparent in many of her designs where she draws reference to historical Welsh textiles.

Fundamental to the body of work, has been the in depth technical exploration of multi layered weave structures combined with colour and the deviation of the expected path of a warp thread. Hand manipulated distortions rise and fall from structurally patterned ground weaves, emphasised by carefully considered bands of contrasting colour. Incredibly labour- intensive to produce, there is also no scope for errors. Impossible to commercially produce in volume they are a celebration of hand created textiles.

Keeping in mind the aspect of optical illusions Sian digitally developed her woven creations into new patterns that would be impossible literally to weave, but significantly look like weaves. She utilises modern technology to develop her woven creations into new dimensions, thus providing opportunities for maintaining handmade crafts yet with the possibilities of mass production.

Sian hopes to create a visual technical challenge that tricks the viewer when observing her designs, which she intends to be used primarily for interiors, both functional and aesthetic.
See Sian at New Designers, Part 1 at the Carmarthenshire College (Coleg Sir Gar) stand. Date: 27th – 30th June 2012.
Major achievements to date include second place winner of the international Hand and Lock hand embroidery competition 2010. She received two commendation awards from Bradford Textile Society in 2010 and is currently exhibiting in the touring exhibition ‘Invisible Cities and Hidden Landscapes.’ She was recently successful in gaining a scholarship from the Milford Haven Port Authority providing her valuable support through her studies. She has been part of a group exhibition ‘Little and Large,’ in 2010 as well as taking part in the touring exhibition ‘Lines and Strata 2010.’ She was invited to take part in the Christmas exhibition at ‘Craft in the Bay’ Cardiff for December 2012. Contact Sian on

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.