Process towards To Houshi Onsen.
Process towards To Houshi Onsen.
KURUKURU and Venice were recently featured in an interesting article written by Angharad Lewis about the future of the handmade in Computer Arts. It was really good to read about the process of other featured artists/designers and hear their thoughts and to see a discussion about where we are heading collectively in terms of craft and the physical manifestion of ideas.
The Map Tapestries were recently featured in the FT magazine following the exhibition at Spazio Rossana Orlandi at Milan Design Week.
Here’s the full interview if you are interested in reading a bit more about the process behind it. Many thanks to freelance journalist Victoria Maw for the feature.
How were the tapestries woven? What type of loom? What type of yarn?
The map tapestries were woven on a simple small rigid heddle loom, which makes it easy to transport around. For these pieces I used a variety of yarns, (such as silk, linen, cotton,)being led by colours and lustres for different parts of the story within the weaving.
Could you give me a few examples of the scenes depicted in any one of the journeys?
Manhattan, Berlin, Venice and a small onsen (hot spring) town in Japan called Minakami are depicted in the tapestry series. The latter, To Houshi Onsen describes the journey from Tokyo to this remote guesthouse and the experience of being at the Onsen. It begins with the rising sun and urban sprawl of Tokyo which through the clouds gives way to the fleeting landscapes of rural life as viewed from the bullet train. The next scene takes an aerial view of the path through the mountains up to the village minakami and then in the next frame there is the view from the lodgings,and centrally a stream running through the buildings. There follows the sensations of the hot spring and the meal that followed, and other observations of that experience. Finally there is the facades of the buildings itself and the journey back down the mountain.
I know we talked about expressing memories that weren’t necessary visual ones…sights and sounds etc? Could you just tell me a bit more about how you did that? I think I used the word “emotions” but you described it slightly differently?
I read a poster here in Milan yesterday that read “colour is music for the eyes” and I really liked that, weaving allows you to work with pure colour in a way that can be very evocative. We live in a time where photography is our go to for memory storage but I am interested in how experience can be documented and mapped in other ways, ways perhaps that explore more about the sensations, physicality, atmosphere and emotions of a place than the visuals. I think textiles lends itself well to expressing these qualities of memories and experiences.
I am pleased to announce that I will be exhibiting my Map Tapestries series as part of NY design week at Various Projects space. Here & There is a travel themed exhibition, bringing together hand crafted objects from all over the world that explore this subject at this point in time, and is organised by FIELD.
Off to Milan, words to follow…
Section from ‘To Houshi Onsen’, 2013
On friday, work was completed on my latest tapestry ‘To Houshi Onsen’, a weaving that I began to plot out in early January and have been steadily working on since the start of february. ’To Houshi Onsen’ maps a journey I took last July from Tokyo to an onsen (hot spring) in the Gunma prefecture of Japan, the nearest town being Minakami.
This weaving is part of my Map Tapestries series and will be exhibited, along with the full series at the Milan Furniture fair at Rossana Orlandi Gallery from Monday, part of a group show with other students at Konstfack. I will be at the gallery from Thursday 11th until Sunday 14th so if you are in town for the fair and would like to see my weavings and say hello, that would be great,
I will post further about this weaving soon, but in the meantime here follows some info about the group show and look here for the full website for the exhibition.
When society is a slave to discount culture and fast consumption, as it seems we are today, the consequence is that our environment and ethical values pay a high price.
The flood of products is like the Internet, widely distributed and commercially available anytime, anywhere. As a result, it is not so unusual that young designers are reexamining the value of craft which they can perform themselves using historical references which provides more extracted information because it is analyzable and not based on speculation.
The 1962 Nobel Laureate in Physiology or Medicine, James D. Watson, best known as a co-discoverer of the structure of DNA, said in an interview that within the deluge of information, the current, mainstream education system focuses on mastering how to use, process and dispose of information. Since human nature has a tendency to accept things we have seen or heard, Watson warns that we are loosing the ability to “keep the facts and develop our own ideas.” *
It seems that young designers, who are trained to be sensitive and critical, find a way out of this problem themselves. While curating this exhibition, I have witnessed a strong tendency amongst this year’s students at Konstfack and that is, Facts = Craft.
Through the process of craft and critical thinking, they try to reach the unconscious soul of the design – the Anima. This working / thinking method of craft has a timely relevance to tackle our contemporary questions and sooner or later, they will also find other relevant methods and critical points depending on how our future looks, but they direct us to understand the current point of design history.
* From the book “Chino-Gyakuten” by Mayuni Yoshinari.
Map Tapestries is a series of tapestries that explore the documentation of experience and place as well as ideas of nomadic textile furniture. In numerous cultures throughout history, woven textiles have simultaneously acted as interior furnishings, vehicles for storytelling and symbols of value. Examples can be found from various nomadic tribes who explored the landscape around them. Waldron uses the cities she has visited and journeys undertaken in the past years such as New York, Venice and Berlin and also to Minakami, a little village in Japan. Within our drastic way of change and possibility to travel and view the world easily through satellite images, Waldron carefully examines and applies aspects of human interpretations of a landscape. The hangings, Map Tapestries become personal monuments to her experiences, but also a relevant vehicle for exploring the world around us.
Head of Exhibitions at Konstfack
Some double cloth experiments I’ve been working on using an Arm computer assisted loom. More soon…
My weavings KURUKURU, Kreuzberg and NYC section are currently being shown at Sky High Gallery in Milwaukee.
NOV-DEC 31, 2012
2501 S. Howell Ave, Milwaukee, WI 53207
And MAZE was featured in this months Elle Decoration UK…
Thank you for following my work, see you in 2013!
Happy Christmas / God Jul!
I have a limited number of MAZE furoshikis for sale, which I am selling in a special box set with 2 risograph prints. Have a look here
Designed for The Link Collective
Traditional Japanese multi functional
90 x 90 cm
100% Cotton Satin
Hand printed in Japan
(see process interview here)
Comes specially boxed with 2 risograph prints.
EMPTY ZOO RISOGRAPH PRINT
Signed edition of 100
21 cm x 15 cm
LION RISOGRAPH MINI PRINT
15 cm x 9 cm
Gouache painting in celebration of the airmail letter, for the exhibition The Drawing Room as part of The London Design festival.