In eighteenth-century literature the figure of the woman embroidering not only represented the pinnacle of good-breeding and virtue but also one of sexual provocation. This is because, focused on her stitching, she was exposed to the male gaze. I challenge the traditional decorative connotations of embroidery, deliberately going against the assumed decorativeness of needle and thread. With my work, because it often deals with gender issues, I use embroidery and stitching to deconstruct certain societal perceptions: 1) that it is a craft associated with the feminine (specifically the female sex) and not considered an art form but a craft, 2) the manner in which I create it which is associated with the masculine (in a factory, on production lines) as well as the non-creative, reproduction of banal images.
In Prick! I present my explorations with embroidery and gender, and which reflect my continued struggle against societal constraints and prejudices.