Anne's book 'Connected Cloth' co-author Cas Holmes

An interview with Anne on the Batsford Publishers website

An article about current projects in August/September 2014's Stitch magazine



 A practical and inspirational guide to setting up and sustaining group textile-art projects, from simple collaborations between friends to ambitious community projects and ongoing 'sewing circles'

'The idea of group projects in textile art is nothing new - ladies' sewing circles have been around for centuries, and quilters often work together on projects such as 'story quilts'. But recently the trend seems to have increased in popularity even more - textile artists regularly get together to share ideas and work sociably, from simple one-to-one collaborations with friends to ambitious community projects and ongoing textile-art groups.' Batsford/Anova advance press sheet

Most recent interviews:

Fibre Arts Australia interview here

'World of Threads Festival' weekly fibre artist interviews here

'Kent Life' featured artist (January 2015) here 

Past publications: 

'Shedworking' blog 2008 Shedworking article

'Embroidery' Magazine, March/April 2010 - 
Review of  two person 'Natural Histories' touring exhibition, by Brenda Parsons

'...the intimacy of the close up view of nature in Anne Kelly's framed wall pieces brought the viewer almost nose to flower...Her heavier and richer layered embroideries are made up of many types of fabric including recycled lace, string, vintage images and found ephemera. These pieces evoke a feel of memory and place. 
Anne Kelly's work brought to the fore a contemporary take on traditional textiles'


BBC Homes and Antiques Magazine, September 2011
 'Collected Finds', photographs by Rachel Whiting and article by Heather Gratton

 'Anne's studio is a repository for vintage fabrics, sewing items and the same way as she uses scraps of old fabrics and ephemera to fashion beautiful artworks'...

photos above and below credit Rachel Whiting

Interview with Janis Haves, Loverslights Gallery, Loverslights blog, January 2012,
Here are a selection of questions and answers from it...

1) What sustains your creativity and what hinders it?

 I am constantly looking for new sources of inspiration - my work is inspired by botanical, narrative and geographical themes. Vintage fabrics and findings help to create my pieces. Being tired and too busy hinder it! I recently went to Taiwan and found the markets there very inspiring...

2) How do you develop new ideas for work - what processes do you go through?

I keep scrap/sketchbooks of inspirational drawings and fragments of cloth. I also use digital methods and processes and take lots of photographs. I use sketchbooks to document work as it progresses

3) What does inspiration or being inspired mean to you and how important is 'inspiration' vs the idea of 'work'.

The two are inseparable, but sometimes one takes over - in my view they are both necessary components of the creative process. The artists I admire most work on some aspect of their craft every day.

4) What are your methods of dealing with a lull in the flow of new ideas.

I like to have several projects to work on at any one time, and work between them. Currently I am co-authoring a book, and there is always work to do on that! I often 'cut up' pieces that aren't progressing and reshape them into something else. A recent piece 'Cuttings' is made up of pieces from previous work.

5) What led you to being an artist - was it always with you or was there a moment when things became clear that this was your path.

I was constantly making things from the time I was a small child, so the art school training process seemed a natural progression. I don't think you are ever 'finished' as an artist - you need to keep learning as you go, otherwise your work becomes stale.

6) How does being an artist inform the rest of your life?

I teach and mentor artists, organize exhibitions and am working on two publications based on my work at the moment - so it is inextricable. I enjoy working with other artists and the feedback from them is mutually beneficial.

7) What does NOT interest you artistically

I don't like to be too specific but generally speaking I prefer work based on the natural and observable world to art inspired solely by fantasy or based purely on imagination. The natural world has an infinite variety of imagery and resources. I like the more abstract elements of it as well as the more recognisable.

8) What is your position of commissions and repeating work, do you see it as a positive thing, do you separate out one off pieces and have other areas that are repeatable.

I love creating individual commissions for special places, occasions and people. I consult heavily and in depth with the client whilst retaining my own style and 'look'. I often produce work in series, which is not identical but explores different aspects of the same theme. A recent commission for an American editor looked at scientific imagery and Darwin. 

9) How do you deal with the process of selling and marketing your work, does it affect you as an artist in any way? If money was no object would your artist/creative choices be different?

Selling and marketing work is a huge part of any committed artist's life - I try to choose venues that enhance and showcase my work well. I also like to collaborate with other artists and writers and produce work for charity exhibitions like the Hospice in the Weald in Kent.


On the web: (please click bold titles for links)

'Anne Kelly - Textiles in the Garden' 

'Birds in Art and Textile Art' - 'Workshop on the Web' 

'Folding Books' and 'Postal Art' 'Workshop on the Web', October and December 2013'

'Hanging and Displaying Textile Art' website October 2013 

Interview on 'Textile Artist' website 

Review of 'Small Worlds' exhibition

Interview on South East Open Studios website