Art Scene

Zara McDaid

Art Scene: Drawn Threads – A contemporary textile art exhibition

Caoimhe Friel from Creeslough.

Caoimhe Friel from Creeslough.

THURSDAY, April 2 marks the opening of the Contemporary Textile Art exhibition ‘Drawn Threads’ by Creeslough artist Caoimhe Friel in Cafe Blend, Letterkenny.

This will be the artist’s first solo exhibition in Ireland since graduating from Belfast School of Art in June last year.


The exhibition will showcase fourteen unique framed embroideries on linen. After returning from a trip to Norway as artist in residence in October last year, Caoimhe was inspired to create a series of work based on her surroundings at home.

Using a free machine embroidery technique on her domestic sewing machine she has created whimsical artworks that capture the energy of the world around her.

This unique and affordable body of work will be opened to all on Thursday from 6 to 8pm and will run throughout the month of April.
All are invited to the opening which promises to be an enjoyable evening with music by Anna Mieke Bishop and refreshments by Cafe Blend.
In this interview I catch up with Caoimhe to find out more about this unique artist and her work. Caoimhe Friel a Textile artist from Creeslough.

In 2014, she graduated with a First Class Honours Degree in Textile Art, Design and Fashion from Belfast school of Art where she specialised in Embroidery.

She achieved success and recognition with her award winning final year work entitled ‘From the Bed to the Wall’. Her enthusiasm for textile art and her dynamic approach to traditional techniques have gained her entry to many exhibitions.


In October 2014, she was awarded a place as artist in residence in Vesteralen, Norway through the Three Edges of the Same Sea scheme.
“I am Textile artists and I work predominantly in embroidery however drawing, painting and collage are very important to my working process and I rely on them heavily,” she said.

Caoimhe said it is the history of domestic objects and their makers that are the focal point for her work. “Traditional skills like embroidery and patchwork fascinate me and I enjoy applying them in a way that’s unique to my work. I see textiles as a blank canvas to be manipulated, mended and cherished,” she said.


Caoimhe gains much inspiration from travelling and broadening her horizons. “Since then I decided to apply to more projects similar to this and I have been successfully accepted into another artist in residence scheme in Fljotstunga in Iceland.

“In May I will head to Iceland for two weeks where I will carry out a research based residency alongside other international artists and musicians. I would love to continue doing more work like this in the future,” said Caoimhe.

You can find Caoimhe on Facebook by searching ‘Caoimhe Friel Textile Artist’ or log onto to her website to find contact details and view her work.

Ramelton by Caoimhe Friel.

Ramelton by Caoimhe Friel.

Zara McDaid can be contacted on Facebook, search ‘Zara Mc Daid Art’,, e-mail is, Twitter @zaramcdaidart and Instragram ZARA MC DAID

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