Roberta Doorley is an emerging conscious maker with a keen interest in sustainability. Her work frequently reflects her interest in the natural world and social justice, among other areas. She develops her own materials and methods through research and experimentation. Recently, the primary focus of Roberta’s work has been on traditional practices such as weaving, knitting, and paper-making, using natural and sustainable materials. Her work represents a fresh take on heritage crafts, coupled with a thoughtful regard for the present state of our burdened environment. She aims to support intersectional environmentalism and ecofeminism through her work as a craftivist.
These models were initially intended to be displayed outdoors on shrubs and trees for the public to come across in a PR "stunt". This would bring awareness to research done by the Dublin Well Woman Centre, which found that women in Ireland are poorly informed as to their reproductive rights and options. Because of the pandemic the project developed and my final design is intended to be displayed in a published maker's book and/or photographic exhibition. It was important to me to use and innovate with sustainable materials and processes by building on the modelmaking skills I have learnt over the past 4 years.
This project was inspired by my interest in intersectional feminism and environmental justice. My references include the Dublin Well Woman Centre's 2020 Annual Report, the Irish governments's proposed free contraception scheme, and writing on the topic of craft and environmental perception by Tim Ingold, among others. I also looked at environmentally focussed project precedents such as Olafur Eliasson's Ice Watch 2014.
The figure of the witch in 20th century children's picture books and the persistence of historical conventions in her representation.
The archetype and character of the witch has a long history across cultures, and is a consistent fixture both in the older medium of fairy tales and in the more recent medium of children’s picture books. To gain an understanding of the characteristics of the witch which have persisted or developed throughout history, Gillian Rose’s Discourse Analysis I framework is used to explore an empirical visual account of witches in 20th century illustrated children’s books. Illustrations from 12 different picture books across three different time periods (1900-1919, 1950-1969, 1980-1999) are analysed with regard to their treatment of the witch, and the presence or absence of various visual elements is assessed and noted. Then, commonalities and discrepancies across these groups are discussed with reference to the social context of their respective time periods, elucidating the degree to which innovations (or, indeed, historical resurgences) in the representation of the witch reflect the social climate of the time.
Additionally, the formative effect of picture books in early-years development is discussed, explicating the heft which picture books possess as a socialising medium.