A residency at Fibreworks Studio & Gallery
Last week I did the first 7 days of a summer residency in the yurts of Fibreworks Studio & Gallery in beautiful Madeira Park on the Sunshine Coast of British Columbia. It was the hottest week of the year so I experimented with weaving both inside the yurts where I’ve got a fan, and outside in the shade. The two spaces were about the same comfortable tempurture so I opted to stay inside on most days since I had the best of both worlds with a skylight above me and the kind of shade that I didn’t have to chase all day. I did end up spending plenty of time outside for a natural dye adventure which had me dyeing and overdyeing a single skein of yarn to achieve the perfect yellow, over two days. I ended up dyeing with osage and then overdyeing with fustic to achieve the dark yellow-orange seen in the photos below.
I spent the week weaving a sister to my last weaving and opted to go minimalist and omitted everything but the location of the photo, the handball court in Jefferson Park, Harlem NY. Between 2014-15 Katie and I photographed our respective artworks there. Our current collaborative project is a series of tapestries referencing the hundreds of photos of us in that space and other spaces we documented art in.
The week of weaving was the first time in years that I’ve dedicated full-time hours to making art and it felt amazing. On some days I couldn’t tear myself away from the loom. There were definite body aches to contend with and on day three I had to put my table on stilts and change my chair which really helped. I was thinking a lot about Rebecca Mezoff whose online classes I’m signed up for and signed in to a couple times for refreshers on certain techniques. Funnily enough, she was only a hop-skip-and-jump away, in Victoria BC, teaching Weaving Erginomics classes at the Northwest Weaver’s Conference, something I could have really benefited from.
The real fun was with the people that came through. At times the studio was bustling with visitors from all over the world (Madeira Park is a vacation destination), and there was a weaver’s circle on Wednesday and spin-in and potluck on Thursday, both guild events. I rarely get to make it to guild outings since I don’t usually have childcare on those days, so it was a pretty special week to have 7 full days dedicated to weaving and spending time with other weavers, including Yvonne who is a talented spinner and weaver and the founder (soon to be retiree) of Fibreworks.
Below are some photos of my progress so far on my 38″ Mirrix. It measures 28″ wide (or high in it’s correct orientation) and I’ve woven 28″ so far with about 15″ left to go. I’m weaving it backwards and sideways, so it’s hard to get a good picture of the progress from the front, with the warps infont of it. The second photo shows it in the correct orientation. There are some white-on-white shapes in there representing some painted-over graffiti on the wall of handball court. In the absense of the fabric that is in the original photo I’m playing around with making the wall wobbly, as if it is subtly mimicing fabric.
If you’re in the area come say hi, I love having visitors. I’ll have student looms ready to try for anyone interested, too. Going forward I’ll be at Fibreworks on the following days.
July 11th – 13th
August 1st – 3rd and August 26th – 28th