Christine Chester : Poetry of Decay - in Italy 2017


Christine Chester : Poetry of Decay - in Italy 2017


How often do you take photographs of peeling paint, lichen, rusting metal, weathered rock surfaces and neglected buildings? But then what? How do you interpret those beautiful marks on paper and in textiles.

This mixed media course will introduce you to some materials and processes that will help you to create rich and textured surfaces based on the inspiration found in your own photographs.

Dates:  16 - 20 October   Booking Fee: £50

Venue: Puglia, Southern Italy at the Masseria della Zingara

The course is a 5 day course and the fee varies, based on your accommodation, arrival date and departure date. This can be arranged and the deposit paid by contacting Jan at 

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Working first on paper and then on fabric you will experiment with a variety of media including paints, inks, dyes, wax, oil pastel, puff binder, and rusting powder, combined with machine and hand stitch. You will be shown how to create your own mark making tools from found and discarded objects in the landscape whilst producing a series of small paper based studies enabling you to layer experiments quickly, creating an understanding of your materials that you can then take on to work on more considered pieces on fabric.


Please bring with you

  • 1 pack of 100 plain white record cards or postcards (6” x 4”) – 200-220 gsm if possible
  • Small selection of favourite mark making tools
  • 6 photos printed on to photographic quality paper (6”x4” standard photo size) – images of peeling paint – rust – lichen/moss on stone – distressed walls – decay
  • black Quink ink (not permanent ink)
  • Small tube black acrylic paint
  • 1 Black & 1 White Oil Pastel + optional rusty brown
  • 2m scoured (or PFD – prepared for dyeing) fabric (see below for scouring instructions)
  • small selection machine cottons – colours to co-ordinate with photos
  • small selection hand embroidery threads
  • standard sewing equipment
  • small pieces of any interesting Japanese, lace or craft papers that you might have already
  • White tissue paper
  • Soluble wax crayons - Neo-Colour II or Reeves - black/white/rusty brown or orange
  • 1 empty washed aluminium drink can, best ones are Pellegrino and Coke

Please note :

It is important to wear sturdy, flat, rubber-soled sensible shoes with good support. 

SCOURING: For every metre of fabric being scoured, dissolve 3 heaped tablespoons of soda ash or washing soda in a bucket of hot water – please wear rubber gloves – and soak fabric overnight. Then wash in a washing machine on a 60 degree wash. Dry. This process removes manufacturer’s dressing.






Collection from airport Bari or Brindisi and return to airport.
(free of charge from designated flight. If we collect you from a different flight or from the train station there will be a charge.)

Breakfast, a light lunch, and dinner including wine, at the Masseria. 
Transport to and from two local visits, leaving you free time to explore!  Dinner is not provided on these two evenings out.
Use of all our facilities, swimming pool, bicycles etc


Meals when not at the Masseria (two)
Entry fees to monuments (if any)
Drinks whilst out of the Masseria