Textile Tools Part II: Yarn
Yarn is not so much a textile tool as it is a material. I think when titling this small series I was keen on the alliteration. Non-the-less yarn plays a huge roll in the world as it is the building block of most fabrics. Look around you, it's not likely that you can't identify something right away that is made from yarn that has been knit or woven. Spinning yarn (or thread) was also one of the first technologies; archeologists have found evidence of it from 50, 000 years ago. Amazing huh?
This series laments the loss of textile handwork over time. I learned how to spin yarn at Birkeland bros. Wool in Vancouver a month or so before I entered into the textiles program at Capilano University. So, you know who to come to when the apocalypse comes.
This series is being shown at the CTRLLAB until Saturday
Through time the practice of making textiles by hand has become rare and many techniques are threatened or lost. These pencil line rubbings are explorations of the fragmentation that occurs to the textile tool that is beneath the paper; and intern explores the fragmentation that has occurred to the object throughout history. The objects participation in the re-invention of itself is representative of the change in perception that may occur within the viewer as they, in discovering what the drawing is, have a deeper and more critical experience when thinking about the object and its history.
Block printing is an ancient printing practice where wooden blocks, which are meticulously hand-carved, are used like stamps to print fabric (usually cotton) with pigments. Very skilled people in India print cloth using this method and achieve seamless repeat networks by hand; a skill that is passed on through generations and requires an immense amount of experience to master.
The first photo below is taken from the Maiwa website. It is of an indian-made cloth called an Ajrakh. Maiwa says, "Producing an ajrakh involves entire communities: block cutters, dye farmers (for the many natural dyeplants), cloth merchants, and of course, the ajrakh craftspeople themselves (those who mordant, print, dye and design the cloth)." -source