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Interview with David Chalmers Alesworth (Studio 27)

David Chalmers Alesworth, 'Hortus Nocte', The Dark Garden, 2023. Dyed Sheep's Wool Embroidery, Restored Kashan Carpet (Textile Intervention), 193 X 294cm. Photograph Courtesy The Artist

Interview with David Chalmers Alesworth (Studio 27)

David Alesworth (Studio 27) on his work at Open Studios 2024

‘I moved to Bristol in 2015 from Lahore. I work with the garden as archive – the garden is particularly interesting because all of the Abrahamic faiths look to the garden. In Pakistan (I’m also Pakistani, I’m a dual national) I worked a lot with Paradise carpets.

‘The carpets are huge and they take up a lot of space, they weigh about 30 kilos, and working on my own in a studio here means it’s difficult for me to do that because it’s very slow. In Pakistan the studio space is very different, it’s full of people coming and going, and it’s a very social space as well, so this is another life and another kind of activity. But in the UK, I’ve been tending to work with P J Redouté who was tied up with botany of empire by default because of the period he lived through, so I think of it as an undoing in that way as well.’

‘What I’m thinking of showing at Open Studios is probably the Redouté prints, which I’ve intervened on. The Swati pink is particularly interesting because Swat resisted the incursion of the British Raj. I did a public art project last year where everyone made porcelain roses, but of course everyone makes a self portrait – they’re all entirely different.’

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