Who is Gillian?
I am an artist, writer and tutor based in rural Stirlingshire, Scotland.
What do I do?
My work is based in textiles of all kinds. In the past I have created work by knitting fabric, but now I concentrate mainly on constructing from hand dyed, painted or printed fabric. My practice is wide ranging, but it all comes back to my own unique style.
How did I end up doing this?
It was a long route to becoming an artist. Originally I trained as an accountant and, although I didn’t dislike it, I didn’t want to be an accountant for another 30-40 years. I saw the light, discovered textile art and threw in the day job to study first at the Central School of Speech and Drama (art foundation) and then Goldsmiths College, University of London (textiles). After Goldsmiths, I moved back to Scotland and have been creating work, writing and teaching about textiles ever since.
Some of my career highlights so far
- Solo exhibition 'Unsung Muses' at Scottish Storytelling Centre, Edinburgh and Farfield Mill, Sedbergh
- Solo exhibition ‘the 37 steps’ at The Changing Room, Stirling
- Solo galleries of my work at the European Patchwork Meeting, Sainte Marie aux Mine, France, the Festival of Quilts, Birmingham and the Loch Lomond Quilt Show
- First recipient of the Scottish Art Council’s Craft Practitioner in Residence grant at Duncan of Jordanstone, Dundee
- Creating and delivering the Balfron PomPom Blossom Festival, a major participative arts project
- Setting up and running Gillian Cooper Studio, offering C&G classes, short courses and one day workshops
- Delivering a talk about my work to the Quilters’ Guild of the British Isles AGM