Dr Hannah White – Ammonite Shadow: Azurite Swirl Diptych


Woven Trevira thread, canvas
2 x 53x53x7 cm

Hannah’s ‘Ammonite Shadow’ series are contemporary pleated textile sculptures inspired by the sculptural qualities of ammonite fossils. Changing lighting conditions enhance each work, emphasising the form.

When creating the patterns within her woven fabrics, Hannah considers how these colourations will be affected when they are transformed into three-dimensions. As the woven patterns follow the undulating contours and swirling forms, distinctive markings appear, making each unique piece.

The monochrome colours draw influence from the illustrations of 19th Century geology artists, such as Ernst Haeckel, who captured Ammonites’ sculptural qualities in exquisite detail. The copper and blue tones reference the hues created by mineral deposits found in ammonites discovered within specific rock substrates.


As an artist and weaver, Hannah has a fascination with how constructed textiles can create organic sculptural forms. Her work investigates the interplay between the structure of her woven fabrics, material characteristics and light.

In 2019, Hannah gained a PhD in Textiles Innovation at the Royal College of Art, during which she undertook an apprenticeship at an electroforming workshop. By combining this new knowledge with over 20 years’ experience as a weaver, she created a hybrid material process which grows a metal skeleton within her woven fabrics, called ‘Metal Integral Skeleton Textiles’. This enables selective areas within the textiles to become rigid and self-supporting, providing structure, whereas the fluid textile allows areas to compress and fold, creating her sculptural forms. Hannah describes this process as ‘engineering with thread’.

With her QEST Scholarship, Hannah is further expanding her textile art practice to incorporate a wider range of materials and processes, attending one-to-one masterclasses in millinery and specialist pleating techniques with Bridget Bailey, and mould making and casting workshops with Mike Onslow. Her goal is to create larger-scale artworks and work on site-specific installations, fully establishing herself as a sculptural textile artist.

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