Over the last year, some weavers from the Netherlands Weefnetwork group got in touch to see if we could start an international weaving group which would include several areas of interest addressing topics such as sustainability, sharing knowledge and teaching, and exhibiting. We now have a core membership of weavers from six different European countries who are exhibiting in this first International Weaving Exhibition by the Weefnetwork International Weaving group.
My own pieces were born out of the various lockdowns that we experienced in France. The background to the pieces is like a spider’s web of ideas from ten years ago, combined with time to think during the confinements, and a philosophical approach to both being contained and yet with freedom to think way beyond our physical constraints.
Ten years ago, I wrote an article for the Complex Weavers Journal about designing using bell-ringing peals, and the mathematical patterns that these peals contain. I applied the patterns to 8-shaft weaving and did some theoretical designing. During the confinement I was thinking about the craziness and confusion that we were all experiencing and how my own thinking moved from chaotic into coherence and back again into chaotic and how hard it was to focus at times. It took me back to the dissonance that then resolves into consonance before dissolving once more into dissonance that is heard in the change-ringing peals of church bell towers in the UK, and I felt that this had resonance with the situation we were living through – moving in and out of lockdowns, varying levels of restrictions imposed and then lifted, seemingly at random but with some underlying patterns that occasionally emerged.
So I started going back through my notes (that’s why I keep everything – I knew that one day I might need it!!) and thought about the peals that gave me the results I liked the best, and used those combined with weave structures from Oeslner’s A Handbook of Weaves and two threading variations – a straight threading and an advancing threading.
In all I created five pieces based around the same theme and all from the same warp.
This is the first of many exhibitions that we hope to put together and to attract other weavers into the group to work together towards a variety of shared aims and goals. I hope you enjoy this online exhibition. We’re using a platform called ArtSteps, which takes a bit of getting used to, but I hope you will take the time to have a good look around and that you will enjoy seeing what we have been doing. And if you would like to join us, please do let me know!!