L’Orfeo –Bridget Baker, 2017
When Bridget contacted me about her possible involvement with the costumes for L’Orfeo, commissioned for Cape Town Opera’s production of L’Orfeo, November 2017, our relationship was bonded because of our similar memories due to our parents’ work in the South African Wool industry during 1960 – 1990. Her brief to me was to find black wool and make a coat as big as a blanket. We had already introduced our Veldt products with only Merino however experimenting with “wild wool” was rather new to me. There are very few black wool sheep in South Africa, so after an extensive Karoo trip keeping my eye on the fields looking for the ultimate long haired black sheep.. in the end we had to make do with short and very dirty wool from Dorper sheep, bred for their meat. The base of the cloth was made from the pure genetically improved white Merino, mixing processed with un-processed wool. Our relationship continues and I hope there will be many more opportunities to work with this very imaginative and talented lady.
About Bridget : “Her work intersects documentary and memory-construction, forming a series of complex visual fragments realised through filmmaking, installation and performed re-stagings. Her practise and visual language, whilst based on in-depth research into questions about her own past as well as collective memory within colonial and postcolonial narratives, remains characteristically speculative, nomadic and estranging.