Jessica Hemmings

Textile Writer

Igshaan Adams


full article published in Norwegian Crafts

The synthetic rope that South African artist Igshaan Adams uses in his recent tapestry weavings comes from the Cape Town based Southern Rope company and always involves an element of chance. He works with the recycled version which means you are never quite sure if the colours visible on the outside of a spool will be consistent because various colours are re-twined by the manufacturers to create the new rope. The risk is a tolerable trade-off for Adams who explains that the colourful rope, a staple of his recent woven work, represents childhood memories of washing lines in the Cape Flats where he grew up. Born to Muslim parents and raised by his Christian grandparents in Bonteheuwel on the Cape Flats – “barren stretches of land south-east of Cape Town’s city bowl where coloured and black communities were forcibly moved to during apartheid”[i] – biographic details are more than incidental to reading Adams’ diverse practice.

[i] Justin Davy “Pasting Over the Holes of My Soul: Transformation in the Work of Igshaan Adams”, Igshaan Adams: When Dust Settles 2018: 106.