Registration opens June 24 at 10am.
2013 Maiwa Textile Symposium
Lecture Down the Mountain - Indigo and Silk Farming in a Japanese Village
7:45 (Doors open at 7:30) $15.00
Wednesday, October 2, 2013
Net Loft: Granville Is. Vancouver BC
Originally from Vancouver, Bryan Whitehead now lives in a small mountain village in Japan. On the shady side of the slope in a house perched on a ledge reached only by a narrow twisting road, Bryan has a small silk and indigo farm. With traditional tools he reels the silk before spinning and weaving on an antique loom.
In his lecture, Bryan will explain how he comes to lead this quiet, magical life.
His story begins with his arrival in 1989, just in time to witness the last years of the traditional silk farming in the area. As an amateur cultural anthropologist, he spent the better part of twenty years learning from local Japanese farmers. They taught him the skills of silk farming, cocoon thread reeling, kimono weaving, natural dyeing, and the various indigo processes. Now he is the last silk farmer in the area.
“I try to look around my surroundings very closely, and I attempt to recreate sort of an emotional landscape of the colours, lighting, and textures in the silk I produce myself.”
Bryan is now sharing the cultural knowledge he so carefully collected. His ancient farmhouse is well known in Japan as a centre for the workshops he gives on these subjects. Some of Bryan Whitehead’s recent work will be available for sale at his lecture.