Interview by Olisa Corcoran (cocoaeyesthestitcher) Part Two

Here's part two of my interview by the lovely Olisa of the blog cocoaeyesthestitcher! Thanks Olisa!

Portrait of the Artist as a Young Woman, Part 2

Sparrow Heart

More from my interview with the talented young artist Kate Elisabeth Rolison.

We started discussing her current work stitching modern love poetry onto vintage fabrics as part of the poesie grenadine project and wrapped up with details of her other projects.


Drink me In


Can you describe the poesie grenadine blog? What inspired you to start it? How do you decide which poems to translate onto fabric?

Poesie Grenadine was born out of neccessity, as a means of documenting my Contextual Enquiry Project, the first project of the academic year, in which I translate love poetry I have written now and over the years into stitch. "Poesie Grenadine" roughly translates as "purple prose," the sort of writing which can often arise from adolescent attempts at love poetry!


I aim for a variety of tone in the poems I translate onto fabric; from pure "love" poems to the cynical, humorous, and nostalgic. The piece I am currently working on is based on a love letter to "The Stow."(Walthamstow, where Rolison grew up.)

The Beast & Me


Where do you get the vintage fabric that you stitch onto?
The doilies, handkerchiefs, and linens I stitch on were mostly handed down to me by my grandmother, who, in turn, had them handed down to her by my great grandmother.

Both my grandmothers sewed as I was growing up, so I like to think of it as a tradition which has been handed down to me. I get additional fabrics from The Shop on Cheshire Street, off Brick Lane; it's like Aladdin's Cave in there!

I Have A Smut in My Eye

Can you tell us the process that you use for selecting the images to accompany the text? Are these your drawings or do you get them from other sources?
I mostly use illustrations of the subject matter of the text; drawing them on to paper before transferring them on to fabric. Sources range from the internet to bird-spotting books!

Too Wit to Woo

What current artistic projects are you working on that are most exciting and energizing for you?
I'm currently working on two collaborations; one with my friend Joe Donohoe (http://cabinfeverband.tumblr.com/), and the other with artist and curator Tina Bueno, of the Pharmacy of Stories gallery in Hackney (http://www.pharmacyofstories.com/).


Kiss the Book


Joe and I are recording my poems and monologues on love, and he is then setting them to music to create soundscapes, such as the one in this post: /poesiegrenadine/2011/09/kiss-book.html.
It's wonderfully easy to work with Joe and exciting to be working in this additional medium.

Rolison at a Pharmacy of Stories exhibition
Tina and I hope to soon offer some creative workshops, possibly embroidering love poetry and making love potions, a prospect I am very excited about.

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Rolison at work!