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Sculptural Textile Artist

Artist Bio:

Described as an energiser and inspirer, Alysn draws on the mystery and potentiality of the hidden and unseen by engaging with the space between our conscious and unconscious minds. Drawing on our common experiences of the mutability of perceived reality, the works highlight Alysn's fascination with the ability of the abstract to engage emotional energies. The artwork involves both physical and psychological articulations, connections, and movement.

Whilst an early scientific training can be discerned through her investigative approach, she successfully negotiates a narrow path between materiality, concept and aesthetics; masterfully manipulating textile and stitching skills in metal, metal cloth, wire, plastic, concrete and paint.

The final forms comprise a multiplicity of lines, structures and patterns, whilst concentrating on the beauty, raw energy and challenges of body and environment creating a lyrically fluid space of tensions and interactions.

Materials and time based natural processes create assemblages and structures which invite you to take delight in the natural world.


© Alysn Midgelow-Marsden 2022
wire, plastic, concrete, paint – 250mm x 380mm x 70mm


© Alysn Midgelow-Marsden 2022
fabric, wire, thread, paint, shells – 320mm x 320mm

© Alysn Midgelow-Marsden 2021 
paint, wire – 1220mm x 610mm

© Alysn Midgelow-Marsden 2021
paint, wire – 1220mm x 610mm

© Alysn Midgelow-Marsden 2022 
plastic, wood, wire, thread – 400mm x 190mm x 100mm

© Alysn Midgelow-Marsden 2022
plastic, wood, wire, thread – 400mm x 190mm x 100mm



    Artist in fine art and mixed media textiles, tutor and motivational speaker
    • 1991 – Present: Alysn’s fine art textile work is shown and sold regularly at galleries, art festivals and shows in NZ and the UK, including both solo and group exhibitions. Working to commissions for individual clients includes wedding and special occasion clothing, commemorative panels, corporate environments, books etc. (See list of most recent below).
    Her work was recognised by the UK Arts Council through a grant of $10,000 for the development of a touring exhibition and catalogue in 2006.
    Alysn is a freelance tutor and speaker delivering workshops and presentations to professional artist groups, Universities and Colleges, embroiderers’ guilds, patchwork and quilters guilds, schools, colleges, Women’s Institute Headquarters, local authority art centres and private groups, many times, including being invited to be the ’Madeira celebrity lecturer’ at several Embroiderers’ Guild regional meetings.
    Executive Board Member for Creative Matakana
    • 2019 – current. Delivering an annual programme of creative workshops and events by leading New Zealand artists for a nationwide audience.
    Mahurangi Artist’s Studio Trail
    • 2018 – current. Instigator and lead organiser of regional artists Studio Trail.
    Creative Industries Education Coordinator
    • 2016 – 2018: 0.5 post. Based at the Geoff Wilson Gallery, Northtec, Whangarei. Curation of gallery, coordination of student and volunteer involvement.
    Gallery Founder and Director
    • 1999 – 2012: Direction and management of The Beetroot Tree Gallery for Contemporary Arts (Derbyshire, UK).
    Community Arts and Education
    • 2003 – 2012: Board Member and Artist with participatory art organization
    Projects have included:
    A series of participatory and collaborative works by leading artists including working with school children, undergraduate art students, professional artists and the public.
    Interactive video, sound and dance installations.
    Annual arts festival.
    Tertiary Education
    • 2003 -2004 Developed and delivered ‘Designer Books’ at South Nottinghamshire College. The course was verified by the ‘Open College Network’.
    Private Tuition
    • 1985 – 1992: Delivery of specific science based subjects to individual learners in their homes to undergraduate level.
    • 1990 – 1992: Peoples College Nottingham Delivery of curriculum lectures for A Level Biology and Biochemistry.
    • 1988 – 1992: Loughborough University. Delivery of lectures and practical classes for undergraduate science students.
    • 2009 – Present: Presenting to groups and undergraduates around professional approaches to galleries, owning and running a gallery space, pricing, undertaking commissions, marketing and making better work.

    Recent Exhibitions:
    • Art By the Sea Gallery. Takapuna. Solo show. (June 2023)
    • Timeless Textiles Gallery. Newcastle, NSW, Australia. Solo show. (July 2023)
    • Easel Gallery, Auckland (April 2023) Solo exhibition
    • Mahurangi Artist’s Studio Trail. (February 2023)
    • Baradene Art Show. (August 2022)
    • Helena Bay Gallery, Helena Bay (Ongoing)
    • Contemporary Fibre Art. The Collaboration NZ, New Plymouth. (May -June 2022). Selected Exhibition.
    • Changing Threads. Refinery Art Space, Nelson (March 2022). Selected Exhibition.
    • Art Matakana, Matakana
    • OBV Gallery, Matakana (Ongoing)
    • Lawnmower’s Son Gallery, Hahei (Ongoing)
    • Mahurangi Artist’s Studio Trail. (February 2022)
    * 2021 Art Salon / Fo Guang Yuan Art Gallery
    • Mahurangi Artist Studio Trail
    * Martakana. Group exhibition
    • Fabricated Narratives. Art at Wharepuke Gallery, Kerikeri.
    • Mandurah Wearable Arts. (Australia) Finalist.
    • Martakana. Group exhibition.
    • Fabricated Narratives. Matakana. (May 2019)
    • Fabricated Narratives. Coordinator of group exhibition. Knitting and Stitching Show (UK - London, Dublin, Harrogate. October to November)
    • Martakana. Group exhibition.
    • Kleur Gallery. NZ
    • ArtForm Gallery. NZ
    • The Festival of Quilts, NEC, Birmingham, UK.
    • Living Threads, UK (April) Title: ‘Sensational Stitches’.
    • Martakana. Group exhibition.
    • Paper, Stitch, Metal. Estuary Arts Group Exhibition
    • In Dialogue. Group Exhibition. Haikou and Guangdong, China; Whangarei Art Museum, NZ.
    • Permutations. Solo exhibition. Knitting and Stitching Show (UK - London, Dublin, Harrogate. October to November)
    • The Research Room. Group Exhibition. Geoff Wilson Gallery.
    • Group Fibre Exhibition. Kings Theatre, Kawakawa
    • In Dialogue. Group Exhibition. Haikou and Guangdong, China
    • Curating and exhibiting leading NZ Textile Art Practitioners. Knitting and Stitching Show
    • (London, Dublin, Harrogate. October – November)
    • Self Portrait. Lysaght Watt Gallery.
    • Changing Threads Finalists exhibition, Art Refinery, Nelson.
    • Living Threads, UK (April) Title: ‘Textile Treasures’.
    • Kaipara Coast Sculpture Gardens, NZ. Title: ‘Change’
    • NorthArt, NZ. Title: ‘Negative Spaces’ and ‘Absence and Presence’.
    • Festival of Quilts, NEC, Birmingham, UK
    • Art Van Go Gallery, UK Title: ‘Negative Spaces’.
    • Minerva Gallery, Wellington NZ. Title: ‘This is ... Immaterial’.
    • Mairangi Art Centre. Mairangi Bay, NZ. Tutors Exhibition.
    • Changing Threads Finalists Exhibition, Nelson, NZ
    • Harbourview Sulpture Trail, Te Atatu, Auckland, NZ. Title: ‘Light Dancing’. Large multi piece sculpture in steel cloth and perspex set into the lake.
    • Tenants and Tutors exhibition Lakehouse Arts, Takapuna, NZ
    • Kaipara Coast Sculpture Gardens, NZ. Title: ‘Woven in the Landscape’
    • The Beetroot Tree, Derbyshire UK Title: By Invitation
    • The Beetroot Tree 100 Day Project
    • Knitting and Stitching Show, Harrogate, UK
    • Living Threads, Derbyshire, UK
    • Seed Gallery, Derbyshire, UK.
    • Rufford Gallery, Nottinghamshire, UK. Title: All That Glimmers
    • Estuary Arts, Orewa, NZ.

    • 2019. Becoming (with Steve Balaam)
    • 2018. Fabricated Narratives (with Ingrid Jellick)
    • 2011. Alysn Midgelow-Marsden. Textile Artist (with Big Ant Video)

    Major Recent Commissions:
    Many commissions have been undertaken for private clients for wall based art and for special occasion clothing and for dance theatre.

    Funding Awards:
    2017 Research Award. NorthTec. In Dialogue Exhibition (NZ$18,000)
    2016 Research Award. NorthTec. International Exhibition (NZ$5,000)
    2008 Derbyshire Art Marketing Award (approx. NZ$1000.00)
    Designing and Implementing E Commerce Solutions Training
    2007 Derbyshire Business Link Award (approx. NZ$1000.00)
    Marketing Materials and Digital Projector
    2006 Arts Council England. (approx. NZ$10,000.00)
    Development of Touring Exhibition and Exhibition Catalogue
    2004 Arts Council England (approx. NZ$10,000.00 approx.)
    ‘Tree Dressing’ Children’s Community Project Lead Artist

    Competition Awards:
    2018 Winner ‘Wall Brooches’, Newcastle, Aus.
    2015 Winner ‘Bernina Award’ ‘Changing Threads’, Nelson
    2014 Finalist ‘Changing Threads’ Nelson Arts Council Textile exhibition
    1998 Winner National Embroidery Championship for Wearable Art
    1998 Second Place National Embroidery Championship
    1999 Winner National Embroidery Championship for Wearable Art

    Committee Member UK Embroiderers’ Guild (Branch and Regional)
    • 1994 – 2000

    Authored Books:
    • 2014 ‘Stitch, Fibre, Metal and Mixed Media’ (Search Press)
    • 2007 ‘this Lustr’ed cloth’ - a fibre artists workbook of metals (Artfully Bound)
    • 2006 ‘The Continuous Thread of Revelation’ (Artfully Bound)
    • 2003 ‘Between the sheets with Angelina – a workbook for fusible fibres’(Word4Word)

    Published Articles and Catalogues:
    • 2020
    Textile and Fibre Forum Magazine Profile
    • 2019
    Art Quilt Quarterly (Featured artwork)
    • 2018
    ‘WOW Book 2’. Chapter.
    ‘Fabricated Narratives’. Exhibition Catalogue
    Junction Magazine (Profile)
    • 2015
    The New Zealand Artist (Profile)
    Art textiles from Aotearoa. Exhibition Catalogue
    • 2004 - present
    Project and information articles in ‘Down Under Textiles’, ‘Sewing World’, ‘Stitch’, ‘Paper, Cloth, Scissors’, ‘Workbox’, ‘Workshop on the Web’, ‘Classic Stitches’, ‘The Computer Textile Design Group’,’ NZ Artist’, ‘Junction’.
    • 2004 – 2005
    Craftsman Magazine ‘Diary of a craftsman’ 12 monthly 2,000 word articles.
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