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Queen of the Waves (Bathed in Moonlight)

Queen of the Waves (Bathed in Moonlight)

Title | QUEEN OF THE WAVES (BATHED IN MOONLIGHT) Type | Original Mixed Media Cyanotype
Inspiration | Gertrude Ederle
Year | 2024

Materials | Cyanotype, handmade paper, 6-carat white gold and hand stitched natural pearls This artwork can be hung both landscape and portrait orientation
32.7in x 45.5in x 2.17in (depth)


This artwork was inspired by Gertrude Ederle. Nicknamed Queen Of The Waves, she was an American competition swimmer, record breaker and Olympic medalist. Best known for becoming the first woman to swim across the English Channel in 1926, a feat widely celebrated at the time and is still recognized today as a remarkable achievement.

Her successful Channel swim challenged traditional gender roles and norms of the time and her success inspired other women to pursue their athletic dreams. Gertrude Ederle was a trailblazer in a male-dominated sport, and her success challenged assumptions about women's ability to compete at the highest level. By demonstrating her physical and mental toughness, as well as her competitive spirit, Ederle broke down barriers and paved the way for future generations of female athletes.

In addition to her achievements as a swimmer, Gertrude Ederle had a number of other notable accomplishments throughout her life.

  1. Advocate for women's sports: Ederle was a strong advocate for women's sports and worked to promote greater opportunities for female athletes. She believed that women should have the same opportunities as men to compete in sports and pushed back against the prevailing gender norms of her time.

  2. Public speaker: Ederle was a popular public speaker and often gave talks about her swimming career and her experiences as a woman in a male-dominated field. She was known for her wit and humour, as well as her inspiring message of determination and perseverance.

  3. Movie actress: Ederle appeared in several Hollywood films during the 1920s and 1930s, including a starring role in the 1927 film "Swim Girl, Swim."

  1. Businesswoman: Ederle ran her own swimwear company in the 1930s, which specialised in creating swimsuits for women. She was also involved in the design and marketing of a line of waterproof makeup.

  2. Pioneer in hearing aids: Ederle suffered from hearing loss later in life and became a pioneer in the development of hearing aids. She worked with a team of engineers to design and test new hearing aid technologies, and was instrumental in improving the quality and effectiveness of hearing aids for people with hearing impairments.

Overall, Gertrude Ederle was a multifaceted individual who made significant contributions to a wide range of fields. Her accomplishments as a swimmer, advocate, actress, businesswoman, and pioneer in hearing aids continue to inspire people today.

Queen Of The Waves was created by constructing a hand-cut collage using female photographic portraiture, hand-embellished swimsuits and a repeated photogram of a preserved sea urchin shell. The urchin was put into the photographic enlarger and photograms were created capturing the intricate details of the structure of the shell's exterior.

The swim suit was handmade for my model to wear to symbolise the suit Gertie wore when swimming the English Channel. The sea urchin and the pearls represent the ocean.

After coating the handmade paper with light-sensitive chemistry, it is left to dry in a dark room. The large-scale negative was contact printed onto the paper by exposure to daylight (UV rays). The print is then processed by thoroughly washing in water to remove any unexposed solution. It can then be hung to dry, developing to full density Prussian blue after 24 hours. Once dried I hand applied the 6-carat white gold leaf and stitched the natural pearls to create the halo.


Framed: 32.7in x 45.5in x 2.17in (depth)


Handmade recycled cotton rag paper:
320gsm / 100% Cotton Rag / Recycled / Acid Free / Medium Rough


We use float mounting for all of our framed cyanotypes. The artwork floats above a snow-white 8001 mount board, to showcase the paper texture and deckled edging.


Framed artwork will arrive ready to hang.
Each frame is handmade by our London based design team.

All frames come with gallery spec, 3mm thick Artglass AR70 / 3mm anti-reflective/ 79% UV protected glazing as standard.

Regular price $9,850.00
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