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Artist Deepa Panchamia inspires our students

The Art School has begun to reinvigorate its programme of visiting artists, with a focus on women artists. Recently we had National Portrait Gallery portrait painter, Helen Masacz, and our latest visit was from textile artist and haute couture fashion designer, Deepa Panchamia.

Panchamia specialises in bespoke structural wall art and panels for interiors and an avant-garde collection of wearable art for an international market. Combining silk organzas and leathers with inventive pleating techniques, the textile pieces consist of energetic pleated waves juxtaposed with delicate pocketed constructions. The symbiotic relationship between leather and silk – transparency and solidity – give the fabric enhanced properties, allowing it to be moulded, manipulated and transformed, essentially moving textiles away from its traditional two-dimensional form.

Our Middles students were impressed by Panchamia’s accessible delivery when talking about her experiences and philosophy, which challenges conventional perspectives of textiles and fashion. She talked about how the students’ current project can be pushed in terms of reflecting on their drawing and analysing materials. She advocated an experimental process – keeping a journal at all times to record thoughts, ideas and sketches. Panchamia’s own experiences as a student are recent and this was something reflected by the students who saw her work – it was exciting to see a young artist who is working in a very competitive industry, but reflecting that hard work and determination can ensure that this is a possible and exciting career for our young students.

A date for your diary: Deepa is returning to Haileybury on Tuesday, 7 February at 7.30pm as an Art Society presentation, and felt-making artist Rebecca Dallas is coming to Haileybury to talk to our students on the morning of 30 November.