Mechthild Reinders’ studio specializes in the creation of sophisticated handmade felt.
“I am not what I am, I am what I do with my hands”
I am a fibre artist with a passion for the Wild, the Untamed and intrigued by the earthiness of felt.
Felting is an ancient craft, it’s origin dates bach to the Neolithic period, more than 8000 years ago. It is a non woven textile where loose wool fibers have been transformed into a solid fabric through heat, moisture and agitation. Felt can be formed into three dimensional forms or remain flat, it can be extremely delicate or robust.
I was born in Hamburg in 1959 and studied Drama at the Folkwang University for the Arts in Essen, Germany and clown in Paris at Philippe Gaulier and worked at renowned theatres before I moved into film making. Passionate about being in nature and about being creative, I shot nature documentaries for the German public TV.
The birth of my two sons lead to my years as « My Child’s First Teacher ». When I immigrated to Canada in 2002, I had a felting seedling already in my luggage, received at the German Waldorf Kindergarten my older son had attended. The widening of my felting horizon in North America was perfectly compatible with the upbringing of two young children. I taught numerous felting workshops for adults and have worked for more than a decade in public schools, on felting and dyeing with natural dye projects, of which some even lasted an entire school year.
My love for film making continued and my film « Raising Stars » (« Die Kehrseite der Medaille »/ « Le revers de la Medaille »), which I produced, wrote and directed in Canada for ARTE, the European cultural channel, brought me back to Europe in 2016.
I have received numerous prestigious grants and awards for my films and felt art, and I have been a felting student of Lyn Pfluger, Marjolein Dallinga, Dagmar Binder and Gladys Paulus. I am now the proud owner of my own land for my dye plants such as Rubia Tincoria (Krapp) and Isatis Tinctorial (Faerberwaid).
With the felting of animal heads and masks, I am re-connecting to my theatre career. The extreme physical effort, the endurance this work requires and my passion to push my physical boundaries have found a perfect combination here. Felted animal heads, created completely out of wool, are ethical trophies for walls in hotels, restaurants and private mansions.
With felt being a tremendous enrichment for interior design, I am delighted to inspire clients such as architects with an overall textile concept. Leather free fur represents the thoughtful co- existence with the animals around us.
Please contact me for collaboration and workshops.