Caron Penney’s textiles are hand woven using the traditional technique of tapestry weaving. Her latest work identifies with the phrase, ‘the streets are paved with gold’, from the 19th-century story of Dick Whittington. The ironic nature of these words became reality for Penney, when on the 15 September 2008 she unwittingly watched from the kerbside as the employees of Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc. left their headquarters after the company had filed for bankruptcy. These events were to be seen by many as the beginning of the global financial crisis. Penney is now working on a series of tapestries using gold threads. The use of gold is a witty comment on events that unravelled both globally and personally over the years that followed.
Penney explores duality such as ‘lightness and heaviness’ and ‘illusion and reality’. Her work hovers between the abstract and the figurative, creating a window into a world which is both mysterious and familiar. In the tapestries Go_2008_2013 and Stop_2008_2013 the text creates a sense of confusion which is intentional, and mirrors the emotions felt if made redundant from a company or community which a person once felt supported and nurtured by.