This is a project that began on July 16th, 2009, as I drove through Nebraska during that hot summer’s day.  This is an honest account of the life of this project, from beginning to end, not just an overview of the great and wonderful things that have happened along the way.  This is the truth, in all of it’s ugliness and beauty.  Because life is not a beautiful struggle.  It is ridiculous and complicated and wonderful and amazing and disappointing and glorious.

The official blurb goes a little something like this:

“Why did we come here?”

This question was the catalyst that began a two-year journey of discovery to uncover the story behind the 200-year journey that artist Cassandra Harrison’s family made from England to America and back again.

Following the notes and photos left behind by her late grandfather (a former FBI agent), Cassandra set out to re-tell the story of her ancestors’ migration from Ivybridge to Exeter to Dudley, then on to Nebraska, following their emigration to America in 1868.  Her strand of the story brings the connecting thread back to England, in Newcastle, 2009.

The Connecting Thread uses hand-printed textile images, bedsheets and pillowcases to create a living, tactile timeline.  The exhibition is about realizing how decisions made hundreds of years ago affect who we are and where we are today.  It’s about discovering another layer to our identity, appreciating the paths travelled by the people preceding us and giving life to the names on a family tree.

To see photographs of works in progress and completed artwork, please visit the Flickr page.

About the Artist:

Cassandra Harrison trained in Nebraska, graduating with honours in Fine Art and Art Education.  In 2002, she moved to England where she continued her work as an artist, creating works for commission for private collectors, a children’s book author and a solicitors partnership.  Harrison’s work has been exhibited throughout the country and was recently on exhibit in the Visual Arts Scotland Annual Open Exhibition at The Royal Scottish Academy Upper Galleries, Edinburgh.  This is her first solo exhibition.

For examples from her portfolio of other works, please visit


3 responses to “Project

  1. Pingback: 2010 in review « Teatowelsandsheets's Blog

  2. Hi, Gill Stanley from Exeter City Council contacted me with regards to the publicity of your exhibition. You will be more than welcome to put some fliers /poster in the lobby of Gloss gallery. We have an exhibition preview this Friday evening (03.06.07 6-9pm) and there will be a lot of people attending so you are more than welcome to bring any fliers to the gallery before then. You are also welcome to attend the preview if you are free!
    Best wishes
    Francesca Dawson

    • That would be brilliant! I am hoping to get into town for late afternoon, take a spin around the space in which I shall be exhibiting and will most certainly be out to see if I can hand over the odd poster and flier. If my plan works and I in fact do rock up to Exeter on time, I will certainly stop by Gloss gallery. Thank you so much for the invite! Hoping to see you tomorrow!

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