As designers of textiles, social change and space we are obsessed with place and place-making. We love investigating what makes place – the colors, shapes, smells and people – and it’s what we’ll explore this summer with roughly fifteen girls in the California Juvenile system. In conjunction with The Art of Yoga Project and made possible through a grant from the Donor Circle of the Arts of Silicon Valley we’ll ask the participants to convey an important place through textile collage. We’ll then make these 15+ panels into a textile that we’ll auction to help our artisans in Ajmer. The curriculum draws heavily on our textile as narrative curriculum we piloted last year. Starting with photographs of buildings and infrastructure in their community the Ajmer artisans translated this imagery into textile collages which were then made into decorative pillowcases.
While an investigation of place is underway for young women here in the U.S. our efforts to make place for our artisans in Ajmer will continue as we raise funds for a much needed workshop space. Imagine a place where our artisans can come to everyday to work and enjoy the community of fellow artisans. Imagine the collective decision-making involved in choosing the wall color (or colors!), in deciding where to put the washing machine and where to store supplies. This will be a place in which each artisan can take ownership and cultivate her creativity.
What’s your favorite place? Where do you feel most inspired and creative, coziest and calmest? Do you have a physical place you go to or does it dwell in the imagination? My favorite place might be somewhere within my first cup of tea in the morning…We’d love to hear from you.