Transcendence of the blues : reinventing textile language with cyanotype blue and indigo blue : a thesis submitted in partial fulfilment of the requirements for a Master in Design at Massey University, Wellington, New Zealand

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Massey University
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My practice-led project Transcendence of the Blues is an investigation and manifestation of the color blue. It aimed to create self-reflective home and memory based textile pattern languages through innovative Chinese indigo resist and cyanotype resist techniques. The intersection of textiles, home and memory was the fertile ground for my textile language generation. Personal emotions, reflections and interpretations of home were enfolded into my textile making processes and influenced my textile language generation. I explored my textile voice through an autobiographical approach; fragments of memories of 'home' extracted from my living environments were tied into a symbolic language system. My textile designs and compositions drew inspiration from Chinese indigo textile symbolism and constructions, heavily influenced by the principles of Taoism (Daoism) aesthetics. The research journey was tinted with different tones of blue originating from Chinese indigo resist and cyanotype resist methods, framed by Taoist aesthetic compositions and filled with domestic memories and affective responses. Chinese indigo and cyanotype blues were combined to create contemporary, culturally inspired textile art works. Large format cyanotype digital printing techniques with self-adhesive film were derived from the process to produce large, emotionally resonant textile art pieces. Through the pathway to 'the internal self', I hoped to express my perceptions, my conflicts and a deeply realized textile voice. Self-referential artistic textiles were produced with both poetic and practical foundations.