Paying homage to the bold designs of the suffragettes, Bedfordshire’s fluorescent and sequin-emblazoned sci-fi-punk-carnival is a banner for the 21st Century. Playfully reflecting popular culture and the many cultures of the Bedfordshire community with defunct QR codes, B-movie influenced typography and triffid-inspired creatures and the diverse fabrics of the world. Their banner was created to acknowledge the spirit of the early fight for the right to vote and remind us of the strength of women today, to power towards a better future for the women of tomorrow. The workshops focused on text and textiles, echoing the practices of the women’s suffrage campaign and explored the ideas, hopes and concerns of women in 21st Century to develop a banner for Bedford. The text was created by local illustrator Katie Allen.
“It’s been an empowering experience – meeting others to create a symbol of modern womanhood in celebration of the sacrifices and achievements of our great grandmothers.”
"I love that it is women coming together from all parts of the country (and the world) to work cooperatively on a fabulous piece of work… in a very traditional way… sitting together stitching and sharing stories about our very varied lives… and I’ve learned new skills apart from anything else.”
“My daughter, and myself have loved it. It’s a first for us. A unique opportunity to have this time with my daughter and how often do you come together as women. It’s about tomorrow’s generation and that’s really refreshing.”
Bedford Creative Arts is a contemporary arts charity dedicated to commissioning high quality art with communities and working with artists to explore new developments in socially engaged art practice. Our work is focused outside the gallery space in social spaces and in schools in Bedford and Bedfordshire.
Quilla Constance ‘QC’ is an exoticized militant punk persona and the creation of artist Jennifer Allen. The artist’s work is concerned with exploring perceptions of race, identity and gender, particularly within pop and contemporary culture. As Quilla Constance she inserts her artistic practice into pop culture to interrupt the status quo. ‘QC’ can be found forging protests in public space, traversing music venues, entering art galleries and staging interventions using a wide range of interdisciplinary media, including live performance, large scale paintings, costumes, music videos, photographs and lectures. Her work embodies a vibrant and dynamic punk aesthetic. She employs languages of irony and hyperbole to make her costumes using exoticized materials and DIY techniques to create a powerful visual impact. The artist lives in Bedford.