FARFIELD Mill is recognised as the leading venue for textile arts in the north west.

Housed in a wonderfully restored Victorian woollen mill nestling between the Lake District and the Yorkshire Dales, in the shadow of the glorious Howgill fells, last year, the vibrant arts and heritage centre staged several must-see exhibitions - and this year's programme is shaping up to be equally as good.

Gillian Cooper is a Scottish artist passionate about textiles and ancient goddess sculptures. She has combined her enthusiasm for both in her current series of work, Unsung Muses, which is on show until May 10 in the Sedbergh venue's Howgill Gallery.

Unsung Muses consists of flat and empty figures, left with only traces of past human existence, washed out by the waves of time lapping and crashing over them.

Inspired by ancient goddess sculptures of simple human form, only just recognisable, obviously precious and old, her figures are many things: an attempt to connect with our history; an exploration of the human shape; a search for the defining elements of being human. Running alongside Gillian's thoughts is the idea of time passing, washing away the precision of memories with the waves of time.

Gillian started her adult life as an accountant before discovering her real passion - textiles. After graduating from Goldsmiths in 2005, she moved to rural Scotland and set up her textile practice. In addition to making her unique textile art, she also works to commission, writes about textiles and runs workshops about textiles and creativity.

Meanwhile, Through A Window, is running in Farfield's Dover Gallery until May 3, put together by Blue Tarn, a group of women artists based in Cumbria whose practices are diverse and invigorating. Their media includes drawing, painting, photography, mixed media, print, felt, tufted textiles and ceramics.

Farfield's third exhibition (also until May 3) is in the 2K Gallery, Make Do and Mend, from Metaphor, a group of textile artists working across a range of media and techniques. Apparently, Make Do and Mend was borne out of a desire to use existing resources in a creative way. And each artist has approached this in their own unique style. Responses to the theme include; recycling, stash busting, reusing and up-cycling.

Farfield is four floors of inspiration - and really is well-worth a visit.

Located on the A684 Garsdale/Hawes Road just one mile east of Sedbergh, Farfield is open seven days a week; the mill from 10.30am-5pm, cafe 10.30am-4.30pm.

Telephone 015396-21958.