Flower Girl

Sophie Rawlingson

1 in stock


“In 2019 we saw a rise in people declaring and acting on their love for the environment, and Flower Girl is doing just that. I think we all feel panicked by the climate crisis for many reasons, like fear of water scarcity, desertification, flooding, or thinking of the millions of refugees that will struggle to find safety in those countries most at risk. The idea of an inhabitable planet for humans seems too daunting to think about, so we image climate breakdown as a faraway nightmare, not a current one. We know that natural disasters are happening more frequently than they used to and that they’re more intense, but we’re still at a crossroads for understanding what we can personally do to counteract it all. There’s a lot of fear around the environment, and for lots of us it’s just easier to live in denial and put it to the back of our minds. But to prevent the earth warming by 3 degrees, or 4 or 5, (the UN predicts 4.5 degrees by the year 2100), we need global change at the highest levels, and we feel like we aren’t able to put that into action by ourselves. This piece is inspired by those people, often younger than us, who rally us together and make an individual feel like a tidal wave of political and social change.

Flower Girl is the first embroidered piece of work I’m doing in an ongoing series called Portraits. The girl features flowers around her as objects that represent elements of her personality.

Flower Girl stands for beauty, strength and determination.”

DIMENSIONS | 26.5 x 42 cm
MEDIUM | Embroidery on Fabric
AUTHENTICITY | Signed certificate of authenticity

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Sophie Rawlingson is an artist-illustrator experimenting with embroidery and textiles to bring texture to her illustrations. Her unique illustrative style has been commissioned by well-known brands including Teen VOGUE, The Hoxton hotels, Camel Assembly and The Debrief. With influences from her studies in Graphic Design at the University of the Arts London, Sophie offers a modern take on embroidery with her bold colours and structured graphic lines.

Inspired to learn embroidery by her grandma, Sophie’s embroideries are where the digital world meets an ancient craft, the online and the offline worlds coming together in her stitches. Her work grounds us back to what really matters, our own traditions and history. She opens the door to memories of lost times and makes us treasure the simple pleasures in life. When she picks up her needles, she immerses herself into her own world, finding her alone time and escaping the noise of the city.

But Sophie’s practice is anchored in the present. Through her bold style, her illustrations are a lesson of bravery, fearlessly comparing past and present societal paradigms. She is not afraid to ask the questions we try to ignore and offers an acute depiction of our present society. Her work resonates with our deepest fears making us acknowledge them. At the heart of Sophie’s practice is a strong sense of female empowerment. Through her minimalist graphic lines and bold colours, she empowers women and celebrate the curves of female contours. She keeps things simple, drawing faces and aspects of their personality, making them look confident, empowered and sassy women.

Cathartic and frustrating at times, embroidery is a process and patience is key. Sophie takes us through her rituals of organising the threads and the needles on the table, planning the needle work and working through the colours and patterns. She pulls through the repetition of the stitches on a monotonous patch of colours, undoes her mistakes and starts again. Following her instincts, she intuitively figures out where to move the needle next. One thread at a time, Sophie pushes the limits of art to become an object that can be held and touched.

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Education | BA Graphic Design, University of the Arts London

Featured | Teen VOGUE, 2019; It's Nice That, 2017; Dazed Digital, 2017; Brick's Magazine, 2017

Group Exhibitions | [INSERT FEELING HERE] (London), 2020; CUNT curated by Laundry Arts at KK Outlet (London), 2017

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