The fabulous Juliet Bawden has been a supporter of and contributor to the Magpie since its inception and it only recently occurred to me that we had never actually interviewed her. So very remiss of us and so to remedy that, here she is…
I am based in London, I studied Textile design at Camberwell School of Art and did a postgraduate course at Goldsmiths college. After I left art school I designed high end fashion that I sold to exclusive Boutiques, I also made exotic erotic costumes and had an exhibition of them in a Berkley Square gallery. Later as my life moved on, to marriage and babies I designed the first baby changing mat in the UK and received a design council Kite Mark for it.
When and why did you begin your design career? I always designed and made things even as a small child, mainly clothes for my dolls. I knew from the age of 14 that I wanted to go to art school, I just wasn’t sure what I wanted to study. This was partly because the girl’s school I went to turned out teachers, nurses and secretaries and I knew I didn’t want to be any of those. Also people in the art world seemed to be the most interesting and bohemian and at 14 that was enthralling.
Who would you say is your biggest inspiration? My mother who has a very positive outlook on life and believes anything is possible, and my late father in law Ray Moxley, architect and designer and the man who came up with the concept of Chelsea Harbour. He was a great inspiration and very modern in his outlook despite having been born in 1923.
Who is your favourite photographer / painter / designer and why?
Artist Mary Fedden, Love the simplicity of her work
Danish furniture designer Hans Wegner his chairs are great to look at and very comfortable
Photographer Henri Cartier Bresson Love the wittiness and humanity in his photographs
If you could have any piece of art what would it be – cost irrelevant?
Any piece of Mary Fedden’s work. She painted in a naïve style.
If you could give your younger self some advice what would it be?
Don’t settle down so young and don’t get bogged down in detail, think of the bigger picture!
What I’m reading at the moment:
In Extremis – the life of war correspondent Marie Colvin
The book I should have read but didn’t:
Wolf Hall -I listened to it on Audible instead
The last film I watched:
Listening to ‘whodunnits’ on audible particularly love Robert Gilbraith series (written by JK Rowling) and Richard Osman’s first book and almost anything by Val McDermid
Music that makes me feel happy:
‘Come on Eileen’ by Dexys Midnight Runners
Stuck in the Middle With You by Steelers Wheel
Gloria by Van Morrison
Jackie Wilson by Van Morrison
Junco Partner played by Hugh Laurie
Fantasy dinner party guests:
Four things to take to a desert island:
This is probably a greedy list!
Lots of books to read
Plenty of paper and art materials
Music to listen to and the wherewithal to play it
A sailing boat with a cabin
Three wishes for 2021:
An effective Labour Government
Enough vaccine for the world and not just the wealthy
An end to the pandemic
Read Juliet’s reviews of books and exhibitions and see her makes and art on her website CREATIVE COLOUR