Arlene Van Rooyen Urangan State High School
The Matter of Choice Textiles
Embroidery on calico stretched over wooden frame


The choice to protect the environment is hidden in everyday choices, even choices that seem mundane, like making the choice to switch to reusable utensils rather than plastic. Similar to the environment, embroidery is intricate and delicate, so when creating a work that represents something so elaborate and magnificent as the environment, it seemed relevant to use media that captures the message of the work. The environment has taken thousands of years to develop, the use of a process that is so laborious only helps communicate the magnificence and importance of the environment, as well as how fragile it is.


The circular shape of the canvas/loom was made by stretching calico over a timber frame. I used embroidery techniques to create an outline of hands holding flowers. There are a variety of different flowers, all different sizes and colours, that have also been created using embroidery techniques. The threads have been manipulated to appear as though the stitches are unravelling below the flowers.


Arlene Van Rooyen

After completing school, I plan on attending university to study business, majoring in events/tourism management. Career wise, I hope to be working with a team who organises concerts, music and/or art festivals and potentially art events/exhibitions, with the hope of one day owning my own company or even starting up an annual festival. As an artist I usually find inspiration from personal passions, beliefs and my heritage. My most recent works, such as ‘The Matter of Choice’ really voices my love for the environment and my thoughts about being an activist for a better future with regards to the environment.