Hand-stitched tapestry depicting local heritage goes on display at V&A

The tapestry, consisting of 35 hand-stitched panels, will go on display at Dundee's V&A from January 20 until April 28.

A community created tapestry that illustrates Dundee’s local heritage will go on display at the city’s V&A Museum.

The hand-stitched artwork, consisting of 35 hand-stitched panels, was created by over 140 volunteers from Dundee and the surrounding area who have been working on the art project since 2022.

For many of the volunteers, the project was an exciting opportunity to learn new skills as it marked the first time they picked up a needle and thread.

Volunteer stitchers and organisers of the Dundee Tapestry, along with the team from V&A Dundee.

The stories illustrated in the Dundee Tapestry reach far beyond the well-known associations of jute, jam and journalism.

The panels draw on stories and experiences of Dundee’s communities from the mid-19th century to today, exploring the city’s industrial heritage, its creative achievements, its biodiversity and its people from 1850 through to the present day.

It reveals the city’s past, present and future through eight illustrative themes which include communities, nature, industry, women, education, culture and creative, international and futures.

The Dundee Tapestry project was conceived and developed by John Fyffe of the Weaver Incorporation of Dundee, one of the city’s Nine Incorporated Trades, who said: “The Dundee Tapestry is a form of visual storytelling which tells the amazing history of our city, including the highs and lows, the hardships and hopes.

The stories illustrated in the Dundee Tapestry reach far beyond the well-known headlines of jute, jam and journalism.

“An immense amount of time and dedication has gone into this large-scale community project and we are all incredibly proud of what has been achieved together.”

“The volunteer stitchers have worked tirelessly for two years, even finding ways to work on the tapestry throughout the pandemic, and now we really can’t wait to share their work with everyone over the next few months at V&A Dundee”

Joanna Mawdsley, head of learning at V&A Dundee, said: “The Dundee Tapestry is a wonderful co-designed community artwork that celebrates the history and creativity of our city in glorious stitch.

“We’re so happy to have it on display and look forward to people coming to V&A Dundee to enjoy the experience of seeing the completed Dundee Tapestry.”

Over 140 volunteer stitchers from Dundee and the surrounding area have been working on the panels since 2022.

A series of themed talks, events and activities are planned to take place at V&A Dundee, engaging audiences with both the design process and the themes depicted in the Dundee Tapestry.

The first of these will take place on the March 10 with Scottish designer Chloe Patience who will lead a day-long masterclass teaching attendees how to make their very own miniature tapestry.

The Dundee Tapestry will go on display at the V&A Museum from January 20 until April 28.

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