+----------------------------+ | | | Meet me in the loom~ | | | | Experimental Weaving | | | | [August] | | | +----------------------------+
Dear confidants and tricksters,
I write to you in a post-risotto daze, perfumed by foraged chanterelles and chicken of the woods. Nevertheless, the loom beckons. We have a lot to discuss, so here’s a whirlwind tour…
Season 3: last month I was in Texas, delivering a skirt for my friend Lia to wear at her wedding. It’s a practical cotton-silk affair, slightly shiny with a tiny diamond texture and improvised crosshatching. The above image is a glimpse of it on the dress form, and I’m excited to post pictures of the finished product worn soon. It was an honor to be tasked with weaving and sewing such a special piece. It pushed me too— this is literally the finest cloth I’ve woven and one of the most important (and breathtakingly beautiful). Because of that intensity, I knew that this project would be the finale for season two of Meet me in the loom, retroactively thematized around “calculation.”
For me this means an internal refresh, a clean break, switching up the energy. Season three has already begun with a spin on an antique floatwork bolt spotted at auction, using stainless steel linen in place of jute (the warp is undyed in this sample, and the block sizes are experimental). That was closely followed by a commissioned denim, which I am about to stitch into a few utility garments as soon as I send this email. The two sides of the denim are navy and lime, and the twill switches direction irregularly. I was surprised to see that the switching and the contrast form an optical illusion of blocks of alternating colors depending on the viewing angle. Seen head-on, the cloth looks homogeneous, but under a shallow light or angle, a shifting checkerboard appears and shimmers with motion.
The theme of season 3 is devotion, in any and many of its forms: personal, spiritual, romantic, attentional… and with the background topics of parataxis and ekphrasis…
I also ended the season of “calculation” in a theoretical capacity, as a student in an interdisciplinary cognitive science workshop. My role was to contribute an artist’s eye and an outsider perspective, and it was a mind-blowing opportunity to learn a lot of weird science alongside some really cool early-career researchers, including frequent collaborator and friend of the loom Claire. Spider subjectivity and the structure of weaving were both objects of study and speculatively explanatory tools to use in conjunction with this collective microscope. I ended up giving a short presentation on those things, a version of which you can read here: loom.sprig.site/texts/extended/. It’s about how spiders think with their webs and looms have agency. That month flew by, and all of these ideas are still percolating in my head, so I’d love to discuss as they continue developing.
Some delightful invitations this summer: first to teach a class at the Marshfield School of Weaving on designing and weaving overshot inlay. The three students were all so artistic and each brought a totally unique vision for working with the technique. It was a pleasure to learn from them too and I hope we’ve all pushed each others’ textile horizons a little bit.
The other bit of breaking news is that my amazing friend Merudjina has curated some of my textiles for a window gallery run by the IS183 art school in the Berkshires. Two outfits, a net, and a couple other pieces are on view for the rest of the month in downtown Pittsfield, Mass. If you’re passing through, the address is 141 North Street.
Also, a bit earlier in the summer Elliott thoughtfully interviewed me for the Gossip’s Web blog about my site. I may have gone a little over the top with my answers, but it’s about webs and webs; if you know you know.
I recently finished Gakuryū Ishii’s August in the Water and Alexis Pauline Gumbs’s Dub, both dreamy, watery, otherworldly, fragmentary. Both easy recommendations for massaging the heart (plus the August soundtrack as a standalone).
I feel super lucky to be in a such a nourishing spot where textiles are critiqued and valued for what goes into them. In particular, Marcs and Jude, quickly budding weavers, kept me inspired and optimistic this summer. Thanks to those two, thanks to the barterers in my life, and thank you for reading. Hit my line for commissions, which I’m booking out through the end of the year, or just to chat, especially if I haven’t responded lately. My gift to you is convection and these words that accompanied pictures of herbs in the best book I ever saw pass through interlibrary loan: “trust that you are safe and you are loved.”
See you in the future,