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Charlie Birtles

space for critical thinking


Charlie Birtles is a creative practitioner working with others to develop ideas, share skills and make. Her socially engaged craft practice is not simply to make art but also to create possibilities for others to explore and express their own creative thinking, encouraging learning by all involved. Her thoughtful output includes site-specific artworks, workshops, residencies and discussions that explore a space for critical thinking and exchange about craft.

Historically Charlie’s been mindful of her material choices, selecting whichever matter (often recycled) will best tell the story of a place or space. Her considered approach includes choosing materials easily accessed outside learning or gallery environments, to encourage others to make further explorations: examples include straw and extruded recycled plastics.

Charlie is aware that work she produced in the past now exists with no direct purpose. As a producer of things, she feels a strong responsibility to make best use of the Earth’s resources, and so there’s an element of guilt once she’s moved on.

Charlie is now re-working existing objects made for previous projects, with the intent to generate conversations with audiences around what really happens once we have ‘consumed’ craft, and to develop ideas for solutions to these issues.