About

CONCEPT

Ceramic Patchwork is both a practical process and a space for questioning. It celebrates individuality, promotes ingenuity and is grounded in circular design thinking.

PROCESS

Using the tradition of hand-stitched patchwork as a mending process, Zoë uses textiles to revive discarded and broken ceramics, creating a new tactile aesthetic for familiar forms. 
The original surface decoration is replaced by printed textile design as individual fragments are covered with fabric and re-assembled solely by stitch.  Once rebuilt, chips and holes stand testimony to the making process. Exterior surfaces present a subtle textile glaze, whilst interior spaces take on a seductive padded quality with the process of re-construction laid bare. 
Leaving their original function and mass-produced anonymity behind, each piece becomes a unique decorative vessel with a flawed beauty that is the result of its material histories to date.  
Pieces can simply be the result of an interesting combination of unconnected salvaged items. Equally they can be the re-working of imagery, textiles or ceramic possessions which have sentimental value. The making process requires a leap of faith, but results in a fresh new re-incarnation. 

by my niece, Eleanor Hillyard

BACKGROUND
 
Graduating with a cross-disciplinary interest in embroidery and knitted textiles from Nottingham Trent University, Zoë’s early career involved developing a fashion accessory brand and designing tailored knitwear for Marion Foale.  Later postgraduate study exploring the sustainability of craft enterprises at Reading University provided the context for working in Mongolia with an International Development charity and establishing artistic practice based on the belief that items should be treasured for the long-term.
Zoë is now Senior Lecturer at Birmingham City University teaching Textile Design.
She continues to be drawn to remote communities where lives are fundamentally shaped by landscape and climate, fascinated by the role fibre and making skills play in livelihood activities. 

EXHIBITIONS

Walking Distance – Fashion on a Different Route / Centrala, Birmingham / 2020
Repurposed / New Ashgate Gallery Farnham / 2019               
Rodmarton Reimagined / CraftAlive, Rodmarton Manor, Gloucestershire / 2018
Nexus: Meetings at the Edge / Kirkaldy Galleries & Ruthin Craft Centre / 2018              
Present & Collect / Contemporary Applied Arts, London / 2017
Balancing Tensions / Anthropologie, London / 2017
SuperBowls / Craft in the Bay, Cardiff / 2017
COLLECT / Saatchi Gallery, London / 2017
Made in the Middle / Craftspace touring exhibition – Herbert Art Gallery & Museum, Parkside Gallery, National Centre for Craft and Design, The Brewhouse Arts Centre / 2016
Lives, Loves and Loss / Fenton House, National Trust, London / 2016
Making a Winter’s Tale / Contemporary Applied Arts, London / 2016
Making in Colour / Ruthin Craft Centre, Wales / 2016
Souvenirs from Home / Devon Guild of Craftsmen, Devon / 2016
New Members Showcase 1 / Contemporary Applied Arts, London / 2016
Made in the East Midlands / National Centre for Craft & Design / 2016                
Winter Craft Show Series / The Craft Centre and Design Gallery, Leeds / 2015
Bowls of Britain Series / The New Craftsmen, Decorex International / 2015
Home Ground /The Silk Museum, Macclesfield / 2015
Leaving Home / Contemporary Applied Arts, London / 2015               
Unravelling Uppark / Uppark House and Garden, West Sussex / 2014
Selected at Newark Park / Stroud International Textiles /2014
Ceramic Patchwork / Prema Arts, Uley / 2014                                                            
Contemporary Textiles / New Ashgate Gallery, Farnham / 2013                         
IntoLACE / Devon Guild of Craftsmen, Bovey Tracey / 2013
Pattern / Shire Hall Stafford / 2013                                                                          
Voices / New Brewery Arts, Cirencester / 2013
Art of Clay / Royal Birmingham Society of Artists, Birmingham / 2013  
Designer Crafts / Society of Designer Craftsmen, Mall Galleries, London / 2013
Made in the Middle / Craftspace touring exhibition – Midlands Arts Centre, The National Centre for Craft & Design, Shire Hall Gallery, Hereford Museum & Art Gallery, Rugby Art Gallery & Museum, Bilston Craft Gallery & Northampton Museum & Art Gallery / 2012

DESIGN/ART/CRAFT SHOWS

The British Craft Pavilion / London Design Fair, London / 2016                
Made London / Marylebone, London / 2015
Delamore Arts / Cornwood, Devon / 2015-14
Art in Clay / Hatfield House, Hertfordshire / 2015-14-13            
Art in Clay / Farnham / 2014
Brighton Art Fair / Brighton / 2014
The Contemporary Craft Fair / Bovey Tracey / 2014-13-12
Made by Hand / Tredegar House, Newport / 2012
Hereford Contemporary Craft Fair / Hereford / 2011
Handmade in Britain / Bath / 2011
MarketPlace: Contemporary Craft Fair / Birmingham / 2010

COMMISSIONS

Plates and Platters collection / collaboration with Libertine, commissioned by Bergdorf Goodman, New York / 2019
The Silkmen Cup / Home Ground, Macclesfield Town Football Club / 2016
Built Broken Stitched / Bowls of Britain Series, New Craftsmen Gallery, Decorex / 2015
The Uppark Vase / site-specific work for Unravelling the National Trust / 2014
British Museum Archives / bespoke collections / 2011-13

WORKSHOPS                

Beautifully Imperfect / Embroiderers’ Guild, Oxford / 2019                 
IKON Gallery Creative Teacher Retreats / supportingWaiting for the UFOs (a space set between a landscape and a bunch of flowers) by Polly Apfelbaum / 2018
IKON Gallery Creative Teacher Retreat / supporting Being Somewhere Else by Osman Yousefzada / 2018
Boro Textiles / Adult Masterclass, Ruthin Craft Centre, Wales / 2018
Embracing Imperfection / Embroiderers’ Guild, Bristol / 2018
What do you Treasure? / London Design Festival, Anthropologie, London / 2017
Boro / Embroiderers’ Guild, Winchester / 2017
Home Ground / Working with ‘the Silkmen’, Maccclesfield Town Football Club / 2015-17.

GUEST SPEAKING

Material Design Lab / KEA Copenhagen / 2020
Society of Designer Craftsmen / Annual General Meeting, London / 2017
Thammasat University / Bangkok / 2016
University of Art & Design / Cluj-Napoca, Romania / 2015
Art in Clay / Artist Talks, Farnham / 2014
The Contemporary Craft Festival / Tipi Talk / 2013
Joshibi Summer School / Birmingham City University / 2013
Embroiderer’s Guild / 2011- present
Royal School of Needlework / Hampton Court Palace / 2011-12

AWARDS

FRIS Award: Material Journeys, Fragile Structures / Research bursary, Birmingham City University / 2015               
Craft & Design Selected Maker: Gold Award / 2014
The Pollie Weiss Colour Prize / Society of Designer Craftsmen / 2013
Distinction Award / Society of Designer Craftsmen / 2013
Antique of the Future Award / BBC Homes & Antique Award / 2012
Plymouth Museum & Art Gallery Purchase Award / 2012

COLLECTIONS

Plymouth Museum & Art Gallery

KEY CITATIONS

Poetic Cloth / Hannah Lamb, Batesford / 2019                   
Contemporary British Ceramics and the Influence of Sculpture : Monuments, Multiples, Destruction and Display / Dr Laura Gray, Routledge / 2017
Ceramic Patchwork: A Textile Process in a Ceramic Form / No Serial Number / Autumn 2017
Craft in Transition / Home and Decor Singapore / Dec 2016
Make, Remake / Ceramic Review, Issue 240 / Nov/Dec2014
Unravelling Stories from the Past / Crafts, Issue 250, Sept/Oct 2014
Craft & Design Awards 2014 /Craft & Design Magazine, Issue 234 / 2014
Exposure / Ceramic Monthly / November 2013
A Smashing Discovery / BBC Homes & Antiques Magazine /Nov 2012
Zoë Hillyard: Piecing together the past /  Craft & Design Magazine, Issue 222 / 2012
Handmade in Britain, Appreciating Contemporary Artisans / Piyush Suri, Vivays Publishing / 2011

MEMBERSHIP

Senior Fellowship of Higher Education Academy (SFHEA)
Contemporary Applied Arts
Crafts Council Member
Society of Designer Craftsmen (MSDC)

ACADEMIA

Birmingham City University / BA(Hons.) Textile Design
Senior Lecturer 2015- present / Co-Acting Course Director 2018-19 / Lecturer 1998-15         
The Mongolian Textile Institute / Diploma and Master level teaching, The State University of Science and Technology, Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia / 2006-07          
Stourbridge College / Foundation in Art and Design Tutor / 2008-09

PUBLICATIONS                                                                                              

MAT_er.LAB, the Interdisciplinary Playground Where Science Means Personal Growth / co-authored paper, Journal of Textile Science and Fashion Technology / 5 May 2020
Yak Combing in Mongolia / Journal of Weavers, Spinners and Dyers 250 / 2014, pp9-12
Diary of A craft maker /Craft & Design Magazine, editions 226-231 / 2013–14

CONFERENCES

Futurescan4: Valuing Practice / Practice-based research, Conference exhibition / 2019
Transparent Pattern Creation / CSpace Conference Creativities in Educational Research / 2018 
Souvenirs from Home Symposium: Exploring Cultural Heritage through Community Engagement / Walsall Leather Museum /2016
Poster Presentation / RESCON, Birmingham City University / 2015
Home Ground Symposium: Using Craft to Create a Sense of Place / Dartington Hall, Devon / 2014
Design for Sustainability / Small is…Festival 2009. The Schumacher Centre for Technology & Development / 2009 
Developing Design Capacity in Mongolia / The Cardiff Group, Cardiff School of Art & Design, University of Wales Institute / 2009
Fiber and Mongolian livelihoods / New Researcher Conference, Birmingham City University / 2008
Knitted Fair Trade / New Researcher Conference, Birmingham City University / 2005 

DESIGN

Foundation for The Development of Wool and Cashmere Enterprises / Mongolian knitwear design consultancy / 2007 
Foale Ltd / Knitwear Designer for the Marion Foale brand / 2000-05 
Swatch Design / Freelance embellished knitwear design / 1998-00  
Zoë Hillyard Fashion Accessories / Designer-maker / 1993-96 

COMMUNITY PROJECTS

Loft25 PPE production campaign / 2020
The Challenge Network / 2010-11
AB+ / HIV Charity Catwalk show project for British Refugee Week / 2008
United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) / One Village One Product programme. Design consultancy and training promoting Kazak embroidery, Mongolia / 2007 
Voluntary Service Overseas / Secure Livelihoods Programme, Mongolia / 2006

EDUCATION / QUALIFICATIONS

MSc Applied Overseas Development Studies (Distinction) / The University of Reading / 2008
Thesis: Links between design and development; the potential of animal fiber for rural development in Mongolia – is the future yak?
Postgraduate Certificate in Professional Studies / Birmingham City University / 1999
BA (Hons.) Textile Design (First Class) / The Nottingham Trent University / 1993 
Certificate in Art Foundation Studies (Distinction) / Middlesex Polytechnic / 1990