Autobiographies or memoirs by crafters or artists, in last 20 years
September 22, 2022 3:44 AM   Subscribe

Looking for autobiographies or memoirs written by crafters or visual artists, and published in the last twenty years. In English and not in comic or graphic format. I already know about autobiographies by Grayson Perry, Keith Brymer Jones, Tracey Emin, Ai Weiwei, Emma Reyes, Marina Abramović, Celia Paul, Marion Coutts and Esme Young. Thank you.
posted by paduasoy to Writing & Language (11 answers total) 8 users marked this as a favorite
Stephanie Pearl McPhee has several books of non fiction that I think might qualify as memoir.

Knitted memoir is a sub genre and while I can’t think of any other author names, off the top of my head it should point you in the right directions.
posted by bilabial at 4:04 AM on September 22

Clare Hunter's Threads of Life is more of a pop-history book on the embroidered arts but her final chapters as she talks about her work with grassroots organizations in Glasgow struck me as such a shift in tone when I first read it that it might fit your ask.
posted by cendawanita at 4:11 AM on September 22

Response by poster: Oh I'd forgotten about knitting memoirs - thank you! The Clare Hunter book sounds good.
posted by paduasoy at 4:15 AM on September 22

I really enjoyed Hold Still by Sally Mann.
posted by pie_seven at 4:27 AM on September 22

How To Catch a Frog by fabric designer Heather Ross. Mesmerizing.
posted by apparently at 5:12 AM on September 22 [1 favorite]

Kaffe Fassett has an autobiography. He is a knitting, quilting and fabric designer, and kind of a colour guru.
posted by jacquilynne at 5:15 AM on September 22

I really enjoyed reading Old for Art School: A Memoir of Starting Over by Nell Painter
posted by NotMyselfRightNow at 5:39 AM on September 22 [2 favorites]

Broadway star Sutton Foster has a memoir about how crafting helped her deal with anxiety and trauma: Hooked: How Crafting Saved My Life

You might also try this one from a quilter: How to Stitch an American Dream by Jenny Doan.
posted by timestep at 6:30 AM on September 22 [1 favorite]

Austin Kleon writes about creativity and such, and occasionally recommends the type of book you’re looking for. I remember him having an easier-to-browse bookshelf of recommended reading, but a quick search only turns up this “bookshelf” category on his blog.

Bonus: his reviews are concise!
posted by TangoCharlie at 9:07 AM on September 22

Not sure if this (kinda?) counts, but Easy Crafts for the Insane by Kelly WIlliams Brown.
posted by jenfullmoon at 12:42 PM on September 22

I really liked Kate Davies Handywomam which traced her recovery post stroke and career change from academic to knitting designer.
posted by pipstar at 1:21 PM on September 22

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