The big show this summer at Edinburgh’s Gallery of Modern Art is a Tracy Emin 20 Years Retrospective.

I enjoyed this exhibition far more than I expected to. I was especially taken with Tracy Emin’s blankets and her appliqued chair. These included hand stitching and applique including stories written on cloth and fabrics from sofas, old clothing etc which have personal significance.

The original CV blanket provided in place of the usual paper version – Hotel International:

(Image from http://www.nationalgalleries.org/whatson/exhibition/5:368/5118/5435)

A later one  – Automatic Orgasm:

and Terminal 1:

Images from: http://www.artfacts.net/index.php/pageType/artworkInfo/artworkID/3097/lang/

And white on white- Super Drunk Bitch:

Image from http://www.bbc.co.uk/collective/gallery/2/static.shtml?collection=traceyemin&image=superdrunkbitch)

I was really inspired by this chair, called ‘There’s a lot of money in chairs’ decorated with embroidery, patchwork and applique. The chair was given to Tracy by her Nan and has been embellished to tell her personal story.

(Image from: http://www.sudsandsoda.com/images/emin/2.html)

According to Wikipedia “An exchange between the artist and her grandmother using the nicknames they had for each other: ‘Ok Puddin, Thanks Plum’, covers the bottom front of the chair and a saying of Emin’s grandmother’s, ‘There’s a lot of money in chairs’, is appliquéd in pink along the top and front of its back. Behind the chair back, the first page of Exploration of the Soul, handwritten onto fabric, is appliquéd together with other dictums such as, ‘It’s not what you inherit. It’s what you do with your inheritance’”.

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