Student to showcase knitted art work

Ashleigh with some of her art work.
Ashleigh with some of her art work.

A Brechin art student is hoping to create a new set of rules for knitting when she unveils her final year work this week.

Ashleigh Christie (22), who studies Contemporary Art Practice (CAP) at Gray’s School of Art in Aberdeen, will be putting her range of knitted objects on display at the annual Degree Show, which takes place from Saturday, June 20, until Saturday, June 27.

The former Brechin High School pupil says she wants her work to change how people’s perception of knitting as a craft and instead start to view it as an art form.

Using yarn, netting, circular needles, her own arms and a few of her friends bodies, Ashleigh has created objects that challenge purpose versus functionality.

She said: “My work is very process lead and on occasion has a compulsive undertone whilst making the work.

“Knitting was originally seen as a practical skill, with the sole point of it being to make an item of clothing that would be useful.

“It made me want to make work that goes against this norm in a more contemporary way by allowing the material to create its own form and for it to tell me when I needed to cast on or off.”

She added: “Using the body within my process-making allowed me to have less control to dictate the end result.”

Ashleigh, who is set to graduate in July, said her time at Gray’s has been very positive and her tutors have always been supportive.

“So far everything has run fairly seamlessly and I have had great support from all the tutors at such an important and slightly stressful time,” she said.

“Gray’s has honestly been a really good experience and I am so glad I have been surrounded by such interesting and supportive members of staff.

“Once I graduate I am leaving Scotland to go travelling through Thailand, Cambodia and Vietnam for a year with the hope of being a part of one of the artist residency programs.

“I would like to continue making works in a completely different environment for a while - being stuck in my comfort zone too long is not really my thing.”

Ashleigh’s work will be on display as part of the annual Degree Show, sponsored by BP for the twelfth year, at Gray’s School of Art, Garthdee Road, Aberdeen from June 20 to 27.