Artwork details

This is Iona Danald’s winning entry for Spotlight 2019

During the creative process of Fertilitea, I was inspired by Korean Bojagi. Bojagi is a traditional Korean wrapping cloth which is patchwork that is made exclusively and for the common people, using various colours of small remnants. While making Bojagi, Korean women wished for the recipients good luck and happiness. It is common for me to use recycled fabrics as seen in my previous textile works and my artistic practice aligns with this particular Korean traditional art. It is believed that keeping something wrapped protects good luck and the practice of connecting small pieces of cloth is associated with long life.

This is highlighted through my usage of recycled fabric and safety pins in Fertilitea. The safety pin is a familiar symbol of motherhood and early childhood, associated with the image of a fastener for a baby’s diaper. Safety pins often hold a sentimental value in some culture. In some countries, they are a form of good luck and they used to ward off evil spirits when attached to children’s clothing. In India, safety pins are kept over generations and they are passed down to daughters. These relics of good luck and longevity from different countries are personally constructed in Fertilitea to represent blessings.

Burlap, chiffon, paper, safety pins, tea bags

43” x 48”





Identifying as Bidayuh and working primarily with textile, Danald’s work is an exploration of femininity, mental health and recovery. Trained in Electrical and Electronic Engineering at the University of Aberdeen, Scotland, Danald left her role as a Research & Development Engineer in 2017 to focus on her mental health. Through her journey of recovery, Danald rediscovered her initial life’s dedication – her commitment to working with the less fortunate and people with disabilities through visual arts. She helped adults with disabilities and taught art therapy during her residency at Asia Community Services’ Stepping Stone, Penang, and volunteered to teach remedial classes at St Mary’s Primary School, Kuching, in 2019. Currently, she’s an art teacher at Mont Kiara, Kuala Lumpur.

Danald is the Winner of Spotlight 2019 by Penang Art District and Malaysia Emerging Artist Award Finalist 2019. She has participated in numerous group exhibitions in Kuching, Penang and Kuala Lumpur. AYE : Across Sarawak and Scotland is her first solo exhibition.