Conversations with craftspeople II: sound, colour and designing by ear; weaving by accident but with meticulous care

A few years ago at the Contemporary Craft Festival in Bovey Tracy, Devon, I wandered around the private view in a dream. It is refreshing to be at an event and not working: a rare day out; a moment to wonder. I have a few similar memories in recent years – a day’s awe in somebody else’s shoes: a gig in Sidmouth; a woodfair in Cornwood; a Hattersley in a blackhouse; an arrival in Stornoway; many a day on the road (where anything is possible); and that one. A day where my mind is so still and my eyes so wide that the forgotten comes right back in, along with people I might have known. At that gig, I remembered the kind of musician I wanted to be. At that woodfair, the handmade life I wanted to lead. Possibly at that private view, the craft that might make it be.

Weaving exhibitor Nick Ozanne‘s aesthetic is entirely different from mine: where I am drawn to the wildy, rugged, Celtic edges, his is a classically refined and tidy Englishness that nonetheless intrigues me. With his elegant silk scarves, pale skin and Virgoan attention to detail, there is something of the epicurean about him, and were we in another age, I’m sure he would be an apothecary, his shelves stacked neatly with beautifully labelled blue glass bottles full of medicinal wine, spices and herbs.

We reeled an array of conversation beginnings off the bobbin as quickly as saying hello. Busy with admiring customers, we were unable to have a long discussion, but here are 12 minutes of what he told me about his life and work as a weaver: Nick Ozanne, weaver, Leto & Ariadne

…and here is a screenshot/link to his website so you can meet him yourself:

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