In 2017, Touchstones was awarded an Art Fund New Collecting Award to build their collection of women artists. With the support of this funding, we are delighted to announce the purchase of MG Montego 2014 (Heywood) (2017) by Clare Kenny and Silver Study (2011) by Jessica Rankin following their successful solo exhibitions at Touchstones.
Appropriating methods traditionally identified with ‘feminine’ pursuits – embroidery and needlework – Rankin’s work features a series of ‘mental maps’, with codes, signs and symbols that explore ideas of memory, intuition and interpretation. Silver Study is considered a key example of Rankin’s signature ’embroidered paintings’ and provides rich connections across other areas of our fine art, museum and local history collections, especially those relating to the history of the textile industry in Rochdale.
Basel-based artist Clare Kenny works with a variety of media including found objects, building materials, neon and photography. Through subtle gestures and assemblages, and drawing on her own family history, memories and experience, she frequently adapts a persona story, proposing a new narrative and exploring the shifting line between truth and fiction. The “puddles” series (to which MG Montego 2014 (Heywood) belongs) is based on Kenny’s childhood memories of marvelling at how patrol and oil leaking from old cars split the light spectrum to produce rainbows on the surface of puddles in the streets where she grew up (including Heywood, Rochdale. They are named after the various cars her family owned over the years. This work in particular has clear resonance to our locale and working-class community.
Find out more about Art Fund here.