An archive of the High Street.

Artist-in-Residence at Erewash Museum 11th September – 31st October 2015. This residency provided an opportunity for me to present a body of work to the specific community that generated the material to produce it. The response was overwhelming and over the seven-week period I received over 600 visitors.

For 15 years I have gathered used labels from local charity shops, unpicking labels from the neck of rag garments. The 30,000 used labels in this collection have all been gathered from the High Street; therefore local residents were once walking around in these garments. This 15-year project proved an excellent way to engage a local audience, both in terms of presenting my work and in supporting their local Museum.

The work allowed visitors to reflect on historic local garment manufacturers such as CHARNOS and DAKS, also shops that no longer occupy the High Street including Burton, Woolworths and Adams. Context lies within the detail of the work. Not only in the design of superseded labels in which we can observe the passage of time, but also in the unexpected detail which tells a story.

The award winning ‘Dairy Cow’ made up of 5,000 used garment labels, was on display in the window at Sue Ryder to accompany the exhibition. At age eight Sue Ryder was given two Jersey cows and subsequently began her own dairy herd, which grew to twenty-four. Young entrepreneur Sue sold the milk and butter from the door and scrubbing her dairy was her favourite job.

What would Sue Ryder think of this Dairy Cow assembled from 5000 used garment labels, all generated through charity donation on the High Street? ‘Dairy Cow’ has been described as ‘an extravagant rescue of fashionable waste’ and in the current global milk crisis offers the viewer a strong sense of community.

Joy Pitts.



The Exhibition of 20,000 Used Labels at Erewash Museum continues until Saturday 31st October, last entry is 3:30pm. The Lally Gallery, Erewash Museum, Ilkeston, DE7 5JA. Tel: 0115 9071141.



MILITARY BOOTS will be exhibited at The Lally Gallery in Erewash Museum, High Street, Ilkeston, Derbyshire, DE7 5JA. Exhibition runs from 11 September until 30 October 2015.

Open Tuesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday 10am to 4pm.



Solo Exhibition - Lace Market Gallery Nottingham

Please join me for the private view Thursday 23 April 2015 from 5:00 - 7:00. Exhibition runs from 24th April - 14 May 2015 (closed at the weekends).

Please note the gallery is open Monday to Friday 10am - 4pm.

Direction note: Lace Market Gallery is in Hockley, 25 Stoney Street, Nottingham. It is on the same Street as The Old Angel Inn (7 Stoney Street). There is an NCP car park directly opposite the Gallery LINK TO NCP CAR PARK.

Lace Market Gallery
25 Stoney Street
The Lace Market
0115 838 0672
Open Monday to Friday 10am - 4pm
Term time only

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Military Boots - Nottingham Evening Post Article

Click HERE to read The Nottingham Evening Post article about Military Boots at Bromley House Library week commencing Monday 19th January 2015. Visit Military Boots project at The Centre for Hidden Histories website HERE if you wish to leave a comment about the project or include any details about your family history.

Visit Bromley House Library website HERE

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Military Boots - Exhibition of work in progress

Military Boots will be available to view as a work in progress on the GROUND FLOOR in the Gallery at Bromley House Library, Nottingham on the following dates:- Monday January 19th 2015, 10.30 - 4.00

Tuesday January 20th 2015, 10.30 - 4.00

Wednesday January 21st 2015, 10.30 - 4.00

Friday January 23rd 2015, 10.30 - 4.00

Saturday January 24th 2015, 9.30 - 12.30

Bromley House Gallery is housed in the imposing entrance hall of the Library on Angel Row, Nottingham, NG1 6HL. The single door entrance is four doors up from the Bell Inn and is between Barnardo's and Nottingham Post Newsagents. See photograph.

Bromley House Library are one of the partner organisations with TRENT-TO-TRENCHES.  Their WWI commemorative exhibition has been made possible by the generosity and enthusiasm of the library’s members, who have offered to loan their precious photographs and mementos, and to tell the ‘stories’ behind their families’ experience of the Great War.

I look forward to seeing you at the Library on any of the above dates and times. I will be inviting members of Bromley House Library to participate in the project if previously issued name tapes have not been returned.

Visit Bromley House Library WEBSITE HERE

Visit The Centre for Hidden Histories WEBSITE HERE

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Military Boots at Thoresby Hall 9th November 2014

Military Boots was invited to Thoresby Hall on 9th November 2014 as part of the Remembrance Day activities and Winterfest hand made artwork.

There are approximately 60 blue name tapes to be returned by Royal Mail, please complete and return to Joy as soon as possible. Work on the boots has begun and completed brown name tapes are arriving daily with 74 still to be allocated. The call out has been published to 117 Women's Institute groups across Nottinghamshire and participants are already requesting stitch packs.

Thank you to everyone who has participated so far, the completed canvas will tour to several of the partner sites during 2015 (not yet confirmed).

Visit Military Boots Project at The Centre for Hidden Histories if you wish to leave a comment about the project or include any details about your family history.

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Michael Noble - The Centre for Hidden Histories

A Nottinghamshire artist has found a unique way of remembering those who served, and those who continue to do so.

Michael Noble takes a look.

The Centre for Hidden Histories is one of five World War One Engagement Centres, established by the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC) to engage with and support communities as they seek to commemorate and reflect upon the century-long legacy of the First World War.

Staffed by a consortium of academics from the universities of Nottingham, Derby and Nottingham Trent, the Centre for Hidden Histories has a particular interest in the themes of migration and displacement, the experience of ‘others’ from countries and regions within Europe, Asia and the Commonwealth, the impact and subsequent legacies of the war on diverse communities within Britain, remembrance and commemoration, and identity and faith.

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