Bex Raven demonstrating at the NEC

Bex Raven throwing

Bex Raven

All about me

My specialism is Art Textiles and I have won awards for my Rockpool series nationally. I love the challenge of portraying the world through the medium of fabric and thread and find that I can create Art in this manner that I could do in no other way. I am fascinated with hand dying to achieve unique fabric and thread for use in my work and I use a mixture of natural and man made dyes. Randomness is something I enjoy and therefore I like to use techniques that have an element of uncertainty and surprise in my work. This translates well into my textiles and my other passion which is ceramics.

Colour is key in my work and in 2015 I won a Julie Caprara Award for Colour in the Embroiderers' Guild national competition. I use this alongside texture to create tactile, semi-abstract work that uses fabric and thread to their full potential. Themes include everything from the natural world to the human body and my portfolio centres around things we are surrounded by in our every day lives. Having lived by the sea for the vast majority of my life I love the beach and water. It is not only the way it looks but the way it effects the area around it that fascinates me. This has led to investigations into use of found materials and sea water in my dyeing process and final pieces as well as providing visual stimuli for my work.

I work with galleries and for private and corporate commissions, my most recent commercial client being J D Wetherspoons. I also exhibit with the ICHF and will be showing at the NEC, Eventcity, ExCel and the HIC in 2017. Currently I have work on tour with the Madeira exhibition 'glimpses of Brazil' and have previously toured with the Embroiderers' Guild.

I studied fine art and history of art and material culture at DeMontfort University and continued with my passion for creativity working as a freelance photographer and graphic designer alongside my management career in the leisure industry until I chose to return to university and qualified as a teacher at Bangor University. Whilst head of department I chose to strengthen my knowledge and skills by undertaking an MA in Fine Art at Glyndwr University looking at engaging the public with Art.

In 2012 I founded Funky Aardvark gallery as a community hub for Art and Craft. The gallery, shop, workshop and studios are designed to give creative professionals a place where they can create, exhibit and, most importantly, sell their work.

I am mother to four and my family is a big influence in my work, often through collaborative practice with both my husband and my children. We are currently working on a textile/street art collaboration inspired by Japan and a new collection of 'wearables' (clothing with technology combined).

Currently I am managing director of Funky Aardvark where I have a studio for my textiles and ceramics. It is here I run my regular workshops. I also have a studio and dye room at my home which will be opening for the Helfa Gelf trail in 2017. I also travel to run workshops and give talks around the UK for private groups, guilds, schools and Universities.