Saturday, May 31, 2014

Kudzu Workshop July 25-27. 2014

Kudzu Workshop July 25-27. 2014
Kudzu Fiber Processing and Weaving Kuzu-fu
at Junco's Studio Muso-an
Lakemont, North Georgia
Sign up by July 10, 5:00 pm

Today's Greening Earth awareness invites us to reflect on the ecology of our choice of actions and art practices.  Kudzu Fiber Processing and Weaving in North Georgia aims to cultivate grass-roots awareness that sheds light on kudzu (L. Pueraria lobata) as a viable resource for craft, art, and industry through education, research, and fellowship toward building a sustainable handcraft industry in North Georgia.
The workshop takes place in Lakemont, Georgia, located in the Appalachian foot hill 100 miles North of Atlanta and 100 miles south of Asheville, NC. The area is known for scenic beauty and lakes. There are many lodging options to choose from camping to historic hotels, b&b in walking distance from Studio Muso-an. A list of accommodation will be sent upon registration for those who need accommodation.

Kudzu, while considered today as an invasive weed and menace on the environment, was the long plant fiber used for weaving "grass cloth" wall covering popular in homes during the 50's and 60's in the US.  Little known fact is that the entire kudzu plant was used by humans since Neolithic Period.  Kudzu fabric is among the oldest fibers known.  Kudzu fabric fragments were found in the Chinese archaeological sites from Zhou Dynasty (1026 - 256 BCE).  Indonesian fishnet is known to be made of kudzu fibers.  Kudzu cloths and baskets were documented in Japan since Heian era (794-1185) and continue to be sought as material for arts and crafts today.  Kudzu roots yield starch for cooking and medicinal use, an effective remedy for cold, alcoholism, and diabetic condition. Kudzu is yet untapped natural resource that might have other good use for arts and crafts.

This 3-day weekend workshop on kudzu fiber processing is aimed for weavers, paper makers, knitters, and artists who are interested in incorporating long plant fiber kudzu into art.

Limit: 4 participants. Area Campsites, hotel and motel list and material lists will be sent upon registration.

Date & Time: Friday, Saturday and Sunday, July 25-27, 9:30 am-4:30 pm
Location:       Muso-an Studio, 67 whetrock Lane, Lakemont, GA 30552
Workshop Facilitator: Junco Sato Pollack
Cost: $500 per person per 3-day workshop.
Sign up:   Sign up by:  July 10, 2014 

Junco Sato Pollack, MFA, Textile Design RIT 1991, is artist and retired Professor of Textiles in the E. G. Welch School of Art and Design at GSU. Junco studied weaving, natural dyes, sericulture, and silk as well as kudzu fabric weaving in Kyoto, Japan with master weaver Tsuguo Odani who was a disciple of Soetsu Yanagi, the founder of Japan's Folk Art Museum in Tokyo and the Falk Art Association.  For over 30 years Junco exhibited her textile artwork internationally, and maintains a studio Muso-an in Lakemont, GA since 2001.  She is committed to living in harmony with nature, nurturing the sustainable art practices, and to the education of the green handcraft movement in North Georgia. She is an initiator of Karen Weavers Workshop (KWW), a non-profit affiliate of the Clarkston Community Center's Women's COOP since 2013.

List of items provided:

Complete outdoor/indoor studio
Dressed hand-loom for shared weaving, or Back-strap loom.
A table for samples of fibers and fabrics display
Work tables and chairs

Vine gathering tools
Electric cooking pot.
Running water, hose and laundry tubs.

List of items participants bring:  
Day One: field clothes -long sleeves and long pants-, rubber boots, gloves, plant clippers, sun and insect protection, hand towel, and apron.

Day Two: There will be dressed hand-looms for a shared weaving experience. Or bring own loom dressed at @24-36 epi, 10 inch wide, any length.

For non-weavers, the class instruction on non-loom processes and back-strap loom is optional, while loom weaving maybe experienced individually. 

A pair of scissors, a crochet hook #G or any where  #8, #10, #12 (medium to large size), and a set of small C clamps with 2"clamp space.

The objective of this workshop is the introduction of the kudzu fiber processing for various craft use.  The focus will be on the exploration of various use of the kudzu fiber itself, not on the particular craft project in depth.

Workshop Schedule: This event may be filmed for educational purpose only.

Friday July 25
9:30 am                                    Registration, coffee, and Introduction to the studio Muso-an
10:00 am                                 Introduction: slide show on kudzu vine collection
10:30-11:30 am                 Field trip: vine harvest
12:00-                             Kudzu cooking: Kudzu will be cooked for an hour -outside-
12:00- 1:30 pm                                     Lunch -Bring your lunch-
1:30-                                          Demonstration of retting, vine cleaning, and splitting, & knotti
2:00- 4:30 pm                      Studio Work -in and outside kitchen and on the benches outside
4:00-                                          Demonstration Back Strap loom Weaving
Saturday, July 26
9:30 am                                    Registration and Coffee
10:00- 10:30 am                Discussion, "Primordial Fabric" Junco Sato Pollack                                               
11:00-12:00                         Warping and back-strap loom set up or Weaving on a floor loom.
12:00-1:30                            Lunch -bring your lunch-
1:30- 4:30                              Weaving continues                                             

Sunday, July 27             
9:30 am                                    Registration and coffee
10:00 - 11:00 am               Other potential kudzu fiber use:  Baskets, crochet, papar, felt, etc
12:00 -  1:30  pm                Lunch
 1:30- 3:00 pm                     Individual work continues
 3:00 - 4:00 pm                    Show and tell
 4:00 -  4:30                           Clean up
 4:30                                           Conclusion of program.
Participant can expect to take home a kudzu place mat

Reading Recommendation:

Alison Court, "The Changing Fortunes of Three Archaic Japanese Textiles". Cloth and Human Experience. Ed. Annette B. Weiner and Jane Schneider. Smithsonian Series in Ethnic Inquiry 1991.
Cheng Weiji. Ed.  History of Textile Technology of Ancient China. Scientific Press 1992
Eritjof Capra, The Hidden Connections: A Science for Sustainable living. First Anchor Books 2004.
Mary Crovatt Hambidge. Apprentice in Creation, the Way is Beauty. the Hambidge Center Rabun Gap, Georgia 1975.
David Flawley. Gods, Sages, and Kings: Vedic Secrets of Ancient Civilization. Passage Press 1991.
Vasant Lad.  The Complete Book of Ayurvedic Home Remedies, Based on the Timeless Wisdom of India's 5,000-year-old Medical System. Three Rivers Press 1998.                  

Daniel P. Reid, Chinese Herbal Medicine. Shambhala Boston 1993.

 Once we see the unity and continuity of life, life begins.
It is the creative way, the way of the creator.

I have the gift of second sight.
I see into the past.
I see into the future.
I see the destruction that could come
if we left it.
I see the beauty that would evolve if we mold it.
-Mary Crovat Hambidge, Apprentice In Creation

Education is the ability to perceive the hidden connection between phenomena.
-Vaclav Havel

Ecological sustainability is an essential component of the core values that form the basis for reshaping globalization.  …………. The key to an operational definition of ecological sustainability is the realization that we do not need to invent sustainable human communities from scratch, but can model them after nature's ecosystems………
-Fritiof Capra, Hidden Connections

As we enter this century,
artists are stitching with thorns,
carving logs, braiding hillsides,
drawing with sticks,
writing poems on leaves
and growing sculpture.
I am drawn to this type of work and feel I am a participant
in a quiet, but significant art movement.
Are artists working in these ways, with these materials, preparing for a fresh attitude toward nature for the 21st century?
Will this work help break down the distinctions and barriers that have long allowed us to think of nature primarily as our resource?
Might such works reveal ecological conditions and cause us to question the character of human intervention?
The outdoors has long been a source of inspiration to artists, but the present explorations suggest a new relationship, entreat a lighter hand, acknowledge a greater interdependence and propose a more profound respect.
-Gyongy Laky, Fiber Sculptor 

I am looking forward to our workshop, sharing ideas to inspire our creativity.

Warm Regards,

Junco Sato Pollack, Muso-an, Lakemont, GA