Anne Norton

Anne was born and educated in Leeds. On leaving school she took a commercial course at the Leeds College of Commerce and pursued a career as a secretary before moving with her husband and two young sons to the south of England in 1963.


She went to Brentwood Teaching Training College in 1996 and qualified as an infant teacher. She taught for twenty years and was deputy head for twelve years. She took early retirement at the end of 1988.


For many years she was involved in the challenging task of designing and making costumes for period dramas for Chelmsford Theatre Workshop, an amateur dramatic group. After retirement Anne studied creative embroidery and fashion and design at Chelmsford College, where she gained City and Guilds certificates.


Anne joined the 93 Textile Group in 1995. She is an active member of the group and exhibts regularly. Her work has proved popular and has sold to collectors at home and abroad. She was Chairman of the Braintree Branch of the Essex Handicraft Association for five years, where she still leads a monthly beading workshop and teaches other textile skills. She was invited to re-join EAST in 2004, having briefly been a member from the group's founding in 1995.


Anne has travelled widely in Europe, North America, Africa and Asia and has found inspiration from these journeys. She currently spends the winter months in Portugal where the spectacular coastal scenery has influenced her work.


In 2010 Anne said "I love exploring different techniques and sources to express my creativity. My visit to Russia led me to produce work based on ancient icons and my tour of India to an exploration of beading and goldwork, and the splendour of ethnic dowry jewellery. A recent study at the Warner Archive at Braintree has led me into African textiles, especially the Kuba Tribal Confederacy in Central Africa - this I can see influencing my work for quite a while."


In 2012, "A chance visit to the newly opened Hepworth Art Gallery at Wakefield filled me with enthusiasm so much so that I was determined to produce "textile sculptures" inspired by Barbara' Hepworth's wonderful work.


Creating the textile surfaces to look hard and metallic was an interesting challenge, but it also proved to be quite a feat to get the "sculptures" to balance and to marry up all the openings. I must thank my husband for all his help enabling me to execute my ideas."


Anne's last body of work is being displayed as part of Following a Thread (2016-17) but Anne has now left EAST as an active member.




For Between the Lines


In a small way my work illustrates some of the horrors of the war - the suffering and terrible conditions of the soldiers on the front line - the wanton destruction of the towns and cities.


"A war to end wars"?


Will we ever learn?



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