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Luminary Issue 26 | Sensory Perception

Two years ago I created Issue 26 of Luminary Colour. This book was titled Sensorial Perception and it drew inspiration on colour from all of our senses. It was created in a post-covid era when we craved IRL experiences, tactile and sensual stories unfold in this book evoking the emotional and instinctual human responses to colour, light, scent, sound, taste and touch.

As we consider colour today, and how it impacts us on every level, I begin sharing stories from the Luminary archive. Colour stories in Luminary are written to inspire colour and material ideas, the themes and narratives play out differently for every user. This is Story 4 from Issue 26: Unravel.

Image by Anna Starmer

Unravel | Inspiration

We are in the midst of a great unravelling, as if we need to undo, untangle and unpick all the mysteries and mistakes on the Earth before we can stitch her all back together again.

Disentangle, Extricate, Disengage, Unlace, Separate, Undo, dismantle, abolish, overturn, break apart, break open, breakdown, break free….

As things unravel (society, politics, climate talks, mental health, family, community, our collective health, global wealth, patriarchy, systems, corporations) we feel a great desire to fix and mend, to repair what we have broken. To carve out a new reality, to make new and create something better. Stitch by stitch, brick by brick. We need to tear things down before we can really start new.

Unravel | Colour

A fiery palette of potent colours, courageous shades of strong pinks and intense blood red. In 2021 pink has become the modern colour disruptor, the global colour of change and activism. The road to reinvention was driven by its reclamation and reappropriation within feminist politics. The colour pink has come to symbolise a story of sisterhood and solidarity in the face of a multitude of threats to women’s rights. 


Unravel | Textiles + Clothing

Feminist artists like Judy Chicago and Miriam Schapiro in the 1970’s challenged the distinction between textiles and fine art, elevating traditional ‘women’s crafts’ such as sewing and quilting. Thanks to its power of storytelling, textile work is central to artistic practices of indigenous and oppressed cultures worldwide. Knitting, stitching and ‘female’ crafts today can be used to raise awareness around gender, social identity, status, inequality, female slavery, agricultural practices, the garment industry and even religious misconceptions. Top right: Pia Camil’s exhibition ‘Bara, Bara, Bara’, translates as ‘cheap’, drawing your attention to the excess of cheap goods imported into Mexico.

Protest banners by Aram Han Sifuentes

Unravel | Mood

A global sisterhood. Las Mujeres. Les Femme. Womxn. We are being called to summon this new world order into being. As we enter this new dawn, the Age of Aquarius, it is vital that we lay the foundations of our future from the divine feminine perspective. It is our power and purpose to remember and heal the female ancestral trauma, to sculpt and nourish the vast and intricate landscape of our femininity, our unity, our pure reflections of nature. Let us be kind, and act from the heart, as we find our way back to ourselves and one another.

Sashiko Sneaker. Traditional Japanese Sashiko stitching onto modern shoes and garments, linking the past with future generations through stitch and dyeing.

Unravel | Lifestyle + Home

Artists and designers alike are reigniting the use of textiles as a political statement, blending ancient craft techniques with modern socio-political, racial and gender issues. Industrialisation has led to the loss of many indigenous crafts and hand techniques, and designers are seeking to rectify the vital role that textiles play in the lineage of the human story. In 2015, more than 21 million people were forced to leave their homes in order to flee from conflicts. The pink house, below, by the artist Olek worked with a team of refugee women to crochet the panels. The house is a symbol of a community coming together, a bright future filled with hope.

Unravel | Beauty + Wellbeing

The act of crafting is not only practical, it also offers us a moment of respite from our daily routine. Coming together in unity to knit, sew or create, we are forced to slow down, to be mindful and to focus on the simplicity of the stitch. Traditionally women sat and discussed community issues, and shared wisdom, passing vital knowledge to the next generation.

In an era where societal and family relations have broken down, it is important to witness the rise in new community support systems and networks, to gather in circle, commune and feel ‘held’ in kinship by like-minded individuals is vital to our future well-being.

Raw Colour. Communicating Climate Change through textiles. Temperature Textiles range from knitted blankets, to scarves and socks and are designed to carry climate data and to provide warmth to the user.


Read more about Issue 26 here


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