Here is the most recent piece I completed for the final in my first metals course. There are other parts below, but I suppose this is the focal point. The piece is directly related to my art education masters thesis. In my Chapter Two: Literature Review, I talk about the benefits of the process that have been identified in previous research. Let me be the first to tell you, there hasn't been much research in the field of art education done about weaving as a beneficial process to visual art students. I spent months looking and I came up with a few actual empirical articles. I had to piece together most of my argument using broader more scholarly texts like Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi's Flow and Richard Sennett's The Craftsman. (Both really interesting and inspiring texts if you have the time.) I primarily discussed the importance of mastery and exploration of process for all human beings, despite intentions of being an artist, and how this is integral for the inclusive Kindergarten through 12th grade education system/classroom. I diagrammed the benefits of learning with hands-on experience and how it really brings learning into a more long-term realm in the brain. Lastly, and most importantly I talked about the educating of the tactile sense which severely lacks attention in the current American education system. There were other points, and I could keep going, but I will leave it at that.
The assignment for my final piece was to make jewelry for one of the 5 senses. So I thought, "okay...I have literally spent the entire semester developing this point of view on weaving as a beneficial creative process...why not make a loom." So I did. And here you have the product. It is a double-sight (visual sense that changes over time with use and investigation) and touch (process process process). I am really happy with the end product. There are other pieces (yarn cone to hold threads, the beater comb, and a pincushion ring that holds the tapestry needle) below.
The semester is almost over. I have one more class to attend and then it is thesis data collection time. I am actually really excited. It looks like all my anxiety was for naught. You can see the site where I am conducting my research here. The Textile Arts Center is an awesome place and if you live in the NYC/Brooklyn area I highly recommend you check out one of their locations. They hold adult classes in all fiber processes and have artist studio spaces for let as well as galleries to show work.
Alla prossima. Goodnight.