Monday, April 10, 2017

Penland--Week Four

So much happened this week!  Here's the schedule... but, of course, much more occurred than what was planned and anticipated:

Monday, we went to Valdese Weavers, a field trip that Bhakti had arranged, and in a van driven by intrepid studio assistant, Nina. She was put to the test right away as she drove thirteen of us in the big van down the curvy mountain roads from Penland to Spruce Pine, then on the really winding road past Little Switzerland and on to Valdese in very dense fog.   On the way back, the fog was gone--to be replaced by torrential rains! The unflappable Nina got us all safely back to Penland with a bit of white knuckled driving and a lot of grit. 

View from the back of the van where I was sitting
Bhakti had arranged the visit to Valdese Weavers and it gave us an incredible insight into what happens to create the textiles we use.  It is a "vertical" mill, one that designs, dyes and weaves the fabrics and we got to see each of those areas.

Here are a few views from the Valdese trip:

Bins and bins of yarns.
Allie photographing one of the looms at work.
Peeking into one of the designer's offices.
Sarah and Nina look at design boards.
Back at the weaving studio for the next several photos... not much caption... just work--some on the loom, some in planning stages, some just cut off!

A visit to the Penland archives one afternoon to see some of the Lucy Morgan samples and drafts.
Carey Hedlund, the Penland archivist, showed us several things and invited students to schedule a time to visit to study the collection in more depth.
One of the Lucy Morgan samples in the archives.
On Friday, Ann Roth visited to show her work and talk about her process of working on a commissioned piece, including designing and detailed planning of hours of execution.
Over the weekend, Bhakti and her husband, Mark, who was visiting her for a few days, and I went to Dahlonega to visit my husband (and cat).  On the way back, we stopped at the Hambidge Center.
Rebecca Mezoff is a resident at Hambidge right now and she invited us to her studio to say hello, see what she's working on, and have an impromptu picnic lunch with her.  She'll be visiting us on Monday, the 17th, as she leaves Hambidge (lucky us!)
Week FIVE is now underway with dyeing going on with black walnuts, Bhakti experimenting with four-selvedge warp set up and weaving on a four shaft loom, me working on finishing off the last tapestry I'd completed before leaving for Penland, and all the students going in many exciting directions.  We have several guests coming this week who will share their incredible knowledge about fiber and inspire us all.

More soon!

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