Yarns invite new tales about Oxford's patron saint

Rachel Williamson at the exhibition                                Picture: OX68833 Mark Hemsworth

Rachel Williamson at the exhibition Picture: OX68833 Mark Hemsworth Buy this photo

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THE legend of St Frideswide is 1,400 years old but at Christ Church Cathedral a new yarn has been spun about Oxford’s patron saint.

Textile artist Rachel Williamson, 44, has created an exhibition of hand-dyed yarns that stretch from St Frideswide’s shrine to the Watching Loft, which may have been used for guarding gifts and offerings in the Middle Ages.

The yarns are died blue and yellow – popular colours during the Medieval period, with the blue traditionally representing Celtic tribes.

Mrs Williamson, who is studying a Master’s degree in Fine Art at Buckingham New University, said: “The only thing we know about St Frideswide is that she existed. It gives us quite a lot to make people think about when they come to look at the exhibition, which I have designed to spotlight two features in the cathedral which we don’t know much about.

“The exhibition is trying to portray that legends are still relevant in the 21st century. Many people still want to find out about them and I hope my art helps them to do that.”

The exhibition runs daily until August 31.

 

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