The Domestic Academic Quilt: Finding Time to Write and Care

Research output: Non-textual outputExhibition


A collaborative research project lead by Vanessa Marr, University of Brighton, hosted at Martins Hall, Loughborough University, hosted by Penny Davis.

This huge quilt presents twenty-three personal reflections on the COVID lockdowns of 2020 and 2021, told through the eyes of UK based women academics with caring responsibilities. Each panel tells their unique story, accompanied by individual voiceovers, accessible via the online digital version.
Underpinned by theories of autoethnography to entice change through the sharing of personal stories (Ellis 2004), the legacy of women and stitch (Parker 1985), and Craftivism (Greer 2014) which has established the power of stitch to emancipate women from gendered inequalities, they collaborated through a series of online workshops, finding strength and solidarity in stitch and conversation.

The aim of this project is to document the impact of COVID-19 on the working lives of women academics, to provide a bedrock for discussion, to protect and value women’s contributions to research and to begin to address the inequalities faced.

The final contribution from the participating individuals was a personal stitched panel along with an audio reflection of their experience, all of which are showcased at the exhibition.
Original languageEnglish
Size3 x 1.5 m
Publication statusPublished - 12 Sept 2022
EventThe Domestic Academics - Martin Hall Exhibition Space, Loughborough University , Loughborough, United Kingdom
Duration: 12 Sept 20227 Oct 2022

Bibliographical note

The exhibition has been made available at Loughborough University thanks to Doctoral Researcher Penny Davis from the Department of International Relations, Politics and History, who is a co-curator of the initiative and who is herself carrying out her research into drawing and maternal subjectivity.


  • Covid 19
  • women
  • care


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