Antje Rook, A Virus A Day
At the beginning of the coronavirus outbreak, I knew that my partner and I had to isolate immediately, due to my partners CML, a form of Leukaemia. As a kind of diary of this extraordinary times and to find a more positive and creative way to deal with the constant input about the virus and its danger, I started to make a textile virus every day.
For me, it is a way to calm me down, to focus and to transform my Angst into something beautiful. This rhythm of creating a ‘virus’ every day, gives my days a structure and a purpose.
After posting my ‘viruses on social media’, I realised, that they are comfort to many people, people wanted to buy them as a reminder of this challenging time.
I’m in lockdown for 65 days now and I expect to stay isolated much longer. For us it is only safe to go out, if there is a vaccine or a cure for Covid-19.
The single ‘viruses’ are about 15cm x 15cm large, the size of the complete work is depending on the time I will stay in Isolation.
I work with different layers and textures of textile material and with free motion embroidery. The ‘viruses’ are not images of ‘real’ ‘viruses’, they are fantasy images, I create spontaneously.
Every ‘virus’ is stitched on an underground of a different colour to accomplish the colour of the work. The finished little square will be stitched on a slightly bigger square. They will all be attached to each other.
Antje Rook was born in Germany in and lived in the countryside near Cologne till she and her husband moved to the Isle of Portland in Dorset.
She has got a degree in Social Studies, Women’s Studies and is a trained Psychotherapist, specialised in Art Therapy.
Antje was always keen to bring a creative element into her life to keep things balanced.
After working with stone for several years, she had to stop stone carving due to health problems and turned to working with textiles. She always loved the textures, the colours and the possibilities of fabric and fibres.
One of her deepest beliefs is, that being creative and making beautiful things is important for the soul. A great motivation is to make herself and other people happy with her art.
Her work is very much inspired by her environment, but also by other people and her experiences, specially feminist matters. She uses vibrant colours in her work, which ranges from small delicate pictures to large expressive displays.
If possible, she tries to work with recycled material and you can find her looking for interesting material on car boot sales and in charity shops.
She still lives on The Isle of Portland with her husband and her 2 border collies.
Antje is a member of Artwey and Dorset Visual Arts, both art societies in Dorset and also a member of the Society for Embroidered Work, S.E.W.
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ANTJE ROOK, TEXTILE ARTIST
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