For the Cotton Exchange project, the use of materials and the construction methods have been influenced by my previous research. This work differs however in so much as it focuses on the garments worn by 19th century cotton mill workers in India and Lancashire. The practical nature of the garments worn in both countries have been referenced in this body of work. These new ‘clothes’ were also produced in response to a visit to Rajnagar Mill in Amhedabad, where spinning equipment, now obsolete, was wrapped in shroud-like plastic. The transparency of the plastic provided me with the visual impetus to develop this body of work.
I bought the fabrics to make some of these ‘shirts’ in Ahmedabad, from the National Textile Corporation Mill Shop, the company still spins cotton in the new state of the art Rajnagar cotton mill, which opened in January 2012. The fabrics I have used are dated 2002 however, and were woven in Mumbai. They are superfine cotton lawns, which are translucent. The cotton voiles (which are more opaque) originated in Switzerland but were supplied by Acorn Fabrics in Nelson Lancashire.