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Supporting the careers of Canadian craftspeople since 1931.
Supporting careers of Canadian craftspeople since 1931.


Drowning Mothers by Rachael Speirs

Featured Artist: Rachael Speirs

Visit the Craft Ontario Shop and explore Rachael Speirs' work on display in the Feature Window from July 28 - August 26, 2023.

Speirs has re-emerged after taking some time away by creating this intriguing collection of narrative-driven textiles which address the experience of motherhood and the immersive nature of childhood memories.

See the whole collection available on the Online Shop!

Bird Bones by Rachael Speirs

As a child Rachael stole scraps of fabric from her mother’s sewing, filling her spare time with making and creating. Rachael would submerge herself into nature or a piece of music, allowing her imagination to run wild. As a self-taught artist, Rachael looked to her childhood picture books and her grandmothers embroidery work for inspiration and to practice her skill. As an adult art never left her. Rachael’s creative inspirations include Carson Ellis, Kate Bush, Shary Boyle, Frida Khalo, Amy Cutler and David Blackwood. Although she has a background in social work, she maintained her love and passion for art. Rachael’s education and working career in social work is reflected in the humanitarian elements of her work. Her pieces will forever showcase her need to share a human experience and to connect with the viewer. Rachael has participated in multiple exhibitions and received multiple awards and grants.

All Silver by Rachael Speirs

"Speirs is an award winning self-taught artist who creates fascinating works using paper, fabric, sewing machine, hand stitching, gouache, watercolour, acrylic, embroidery and other objects. Her background in social work has provided her with a combination of academic discipline and practice-based professional concern, as well as insight into the basic needs of communities. This and her unique use of the medium collapses the division between conceptual art, contemporary art and the public. It gives an approachability of play and curiosity that draws the viewer into a satisfying sense of wonder, with a bit of love, whimsy, darkness, and hope thrown into the mix. It recognizes that we are not just one thing but a multi-faceted array of many things, much like the collage-like effect of Speirs' language."- Gallery House

Drowning Mothers by Rachael Speirs

"Within my work I use scrap fabric, which I cut, layer and paint with gouache to create textural and narrative pieces. Embroidery and paper is added. The result is a collage-like piece that creates a visual metaphor, connecting current events and human experiences. The use of textiles is intrinsic to my work. It allows me to connect with the viewer, as it appeals to their sense of nostalgia; it connects them to something that is in all our histories -- the handiwork, embroidery, quilts and other objects our grandmothers and great grandmothers made that were, in essence, art."

Tide Pool by Rachael Speirs
"My artwork has a strong humanitarian and narrative element. This ties into the storytelling aspect of the work. The work is inspired by vintage children’s book illustration and this, in combination with the traditional textile handicraft, references the haunting experience of sifting through our memories — poignant and evocative; difficult to ignore or forget."

Mothra by Rachael Speirs

Make sure to visit the Online Shop or head over to the Craft Ontario Shop at 1106 Queen St W to check out Rachael's Featured work!

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