by: Caroline Kipp
The Textile Society of America, in partnership with The George Washington University Museum and The Textile Museum, is delighted to present the spring season of Contemporary Voices. This series of talks focuses on contemporary artists featuring innovative creators whose practice draws on textile materials, techniques, or knowledge. This season will feature two distinguished artists, Angela Hennessy and Jovencio de la Paz.
On March 8th, join artist Angela Hennessy for a discussion on memorializing the dead as a critical act of survival and resilience. Many artists turn to their aesthetic and somatic practices in the face of loss. By their proximity to bodies, textiles are intimately positioned to serve in the work of mourning. Textiles mediate the relationship between the living and the dead through structure, metaphor, and materiality as testimony, evidence, and witness.
Angela Hennessy is an Oakland-based artist and associate professor at California College of the Arts. Her practice questions assumptions about death and the dead themselves through writing, studio work, and ritual performance. Hennessy’s work has been featured in Sculpture Magazine, The New Yorker, Nat Brut, Surface Design Journal, Textile: The Journal of Cloth and Culture, and recently in exhibitions at the Museum of the African Diaspora, Pt. 2 Gallery, and Southern Exposure. Hennessy has upcoming exhibitions at SOMArts, San Jose Museum of Quilts and Textiles, and Oakland Museum of California. She is a 2019 San Francisco Artadia Award winner.
On April 12th, artist Jovencio de la Paz will present on weaving the digital. Many historians consider the weaving loom to be the precursor to the modern computer. In their art practice, de la Paz uses this interrelated history to examine the intersection of digital and material cultures, finding surprising narrative threads through science-fiction, histories of technology, and queer identity.
Jovencio de la Paz (they/them, b. Republic of Singapore, 1986) is an artist, weaver, and educator. Their current work, exhibited both nationally and internationally, explores the intersecting histories of weaving and modern computers. Rhyming across millennia, the stories of weaving and computation unfold as a space of speculation around the concerns of material and digital culture and their complex histories. De la Paz is currently an assistant professor and curricular head of Fibers at the University of Oregon.