My history has always informed my search for place, with my family history firmly tied to colonized South Africa. At 18, we immigrated to Calgary, Canada – the move left me unsettled, displaced and without a community. Over time I have carved out a place for myself through engagement with Alberta’s craft, art and design community. Through this journey I have come to understand that I was not alone in my search for a sense of place and finding it through my creative community.
In July I’m excited to be leaning into a new adventure, and will begin a Master of Arts in Critical Craft Studies at Warren Wilson College in Ashville, North Carolina. Over the next two years, in this low-residency graduate program, I will be working on understanding materials and processes to connect my own making knowledge and experiences with the program's curriculum which is focused on research in craft histories and theories.
I plan to critically investigate contemporary textile studio practices and the extended environmental impact of materials used in boutique textile printing studios such as my own. Learning from a broader textile design history, my desire is to expand my knowledge of traditional materials and processes in fine fabric printing and to investigate new technologies and materials for a more sustainable fibre art practice. I look forward to being a part of the craft conversation again and building professional relationships with Faculty advisors and Mentors who are leading theorists, historians, scholars and artists in the field .
Of all the art institutions I considered, their philosophy of “academics, work, service” resonated with me. Knowing that craft has historically been regarded as a force of social and cultural transformation, I look forward to further exploring the potential impact of this on the greater community. Warren Wilson College is the logical next step that will build on my skills to move my creative practice forward and define the academic context for my work.
Photo Credit: Elyse Bouvier