Raven Screen


This screen was developed to work either on a wall, or hung over a window. The organdie fabric, semi-sheer, can become almost invisible with light behind it, so that the raven appears to float against the background, whether that’s an ornate wallpaper or a window.

This embellished raven, created from layers of real feathers, laser cutting and richly textured embroidery threads, becomes a tale of monarchy and anarchy, sporting a crown and clutching dead roses. The embroideries bring alive shifting cultural allegiances; they reference both a 19th c British tradition of allegorical still life painting, which used fruits and animals perceived as indigenous, contrasted with a ‘flashy’ invading parrot or rotting pomegranate, and update that to create complex contemporary embellished narratives of urban migration and landscape. This raven grew out of conversations with a farmer, who had started growing vegetables on the allotments in Lockleaze, Bristol as a lad, become a farmer, and then game bird breeder and supplier of ravens to the Tower of London. Now, my monarchical raven, his feathers embroidered, laser cut and real all shimmering together, clutching a bouquet of dead roses, becomes a bespoke window screen, stitched onto black cotton organdie…