At the beginning of this year, I had the awesome opportunity to visit a 3rd year textiles seminar class at Sheridan College as a guest curator thanks to friend and colleague Thea Haines, an instructor in their department of Crafts and Design. I gave a talk about my work as an independent curator with a deep love and appreciation for textiles. I also helped design and present an assignment to students where they were to prepare a submissions package for a call that I wrote around the theme of cotton. All the students in the class were asked to think critically about cotton-- as a raw material, the history and politics of its production, and its qualities as a textile-- towards proposing an installation that they would create in the window of fantastic Hamilton textile shop, Needlework.
After all submissions were received and graded by Thea, Liz and Kate from Needlework and myself got together to jury the submissions. Though so many submissions were thoughtful and worthy, we eventually decided on a proposal by the talented Alexandra Brownell who, inspired by archival photos at the Hamilton Local History Archives, created a nostalgic and whimsical tapestry that paid tribute to the carefree quality of cotton, outdoor fairs and the pleasure of summertime. I supported Alex through the process of planning her installation and writing an artist's statement, which was a great experience!
Sweet Fibre went up a few weeks ago, and is up for another week or two. Spin around to check it out before it's too late! And congrats to Alex on a wonderful first solo show!