Fibre stories

Khushbu Mathur ✿ Sowing seeds of friendship between sister and brother - A new member of the Garland team writes about the seed rakhi, which helps shares the love between brother and sister with mother nature.
Becoming blind to climate change: An age-old Japanese solution - This is a time when we might look to traditional crafts which offered offline means of staying cool, such as the paper fan and these Japanese screens.
Catriona Pollard ✿ A basketmaker’s holiday - Australian fibre artists draw from the world at hand. Catriona Pollard's story shows how this adds a particular sense of place and time to the work.
Rainbow Serpent art from Pormpuraaw - Artists from Pormpuraaw share stories of the Rainbow Serpent that inspire their art.
Elisa-Jane Carmichael ✿ Weaving with ancestors - Sally Butler writes about Quandamooka artist Elisa-Jane Carmichael, who interprets her fibre tradition in stunning new forms
Circling Back ✿ New work by Harriet Goodall - Harriet Gooddall's new work is woven from rural detritus, gathered from land in mourning for its decay. 
Yirran Miigaydhu Aboriginal Women Weavers - The Yirran Miigaydhu weavers exhibition at Cement Fondu profiles the influence of Thawaral artist Phyllis Stewart.
Manami Aoki ✿ Kushi-ireru-ki (hair of wood) - Our laurel for March 2019 goes to emerging Tokyo jeweller Manami Aoki for her work "Hair of wood".
Reflection pods: Yolŋu weavers create a thinking space in Sydney CBD - Lucy Simpson designed a series of spaces for the offices of Westpac in Sydney CBD, which were woven by Yolŋu women from Elcho Island and Milingimbi.
Crafting a community – A year of time, 2017-2018 - Bridget Kennedy outlines the exchange model that underpinned the Year of Time project that explored alternative values for making.
Baskets for lemurs ✿ An epic challenge - Our second article by Wendy Golden describes an epic fibre construction for the new lemur enclosure at Melbourne Zoo. The needs of these primates from Madagascar are met by one of the largest basket projects in Australia. 
Baskets for spider monkeys ✿ Wendy Golden - Wendy Golden describes the commission to make feeding baskets for spider monkeys at the Melbourne Zoo, inspired by the teardrop nests of Oropendola birds.
ヨークに渡った新潟のわらアート:日本に学ぶ干し草彫刻 - わらアート作家、守屋陽氏から私のもとに1通のメールには、日本で初めて出版されるというわらアートの本の英名が書かれていた。そのタイトルは「わらで地域を再生する」。その出版物やプロジェクトに似つかわしくないタイトルに私の口から笑みがこぼれた。わらアートは西オーストラリア州に何をもたらすのだろうか。そして、それは日本の地方で起きていることと、何か関係があるのだろうか。
Art for whales ✿ A driftwood tribute from Golden Bay - Nicola Basham describes a community project to make sculptures out of driftwood to help in efforts to save beached whales.
Women’s Wealth Project: Biruko and Tuhu hoods - Sana Balai and Ruth McDougall write about the precious fibre objects, biruku and tuhu hoods, that arose from a series of workshops in Bougainville and Solomon Islands.
Shibari on the Strathbogie Ranges: The art of Japanese rock knotting - Anne Newton recounts how the Japanese technique of knotting rocks helped her express her appreciation of the Victorian highlands.
Wara art from Niigata to York: Japan-inspired hay sculptures 🇯🇵 - Jenny Garroun and Ilsa Bennion tells the story of a West Australian wheatbelt town that was revitalised through the Japanese craft of making rice stalk sculptures
Shimenawa: Hidden meanings behind the twisted ropes at Izumo Taisha - Sayumi Yokouchi writes about the huge twisted rope that adorns Japanese shrines and honours the kami spirits within.
Anxi: A city of rattan and iron - During a visit to the southern Chinese city of Anxi, I learnt that China was much more than the world's factory. Behind the scenes is a rich culture of folk craft and ritual. It seems that China is saving the best for last. 
Anne Jillett ✿ “Sitting on a milk crate each week…” - To celebrate the beautiful and thoughtful works that are made across the Indo-Pacific, we're introducing an "object of the month". The first of these laurels goes to Anne Jillett for her Salt Pot. Anne lives in Babinda, Queensland. You can see more of her work at Ellis Road Fibre Arts
4,000-year-old string discovered in Egypt - At Garland, we love stories of string. This rich article from a publication about coastal cultures includes the story of how perfectly preserved papyrus rope was discovered in a man-made cave in the ancient Egyptian harbour of Saww. String-lovers will enjoy this.
Wickery and place - Ray Norman reveals the hidden world of wickery and its role in our musing places
Wicker Wonderlust, a gallery experiment - Karina Clarke describes an experiment in asking a community to fill an empty space with baskets they've acquired.
Where the weaver left off - Gwen Egg discovers an ingenious fibre "needle and thread" used in traditional Tasmanian Aboriginal basket weaving
Building a better dome - Greg Lehman discovers tunapri knowledge involved in the construction of the palawa Tasmanian Aboriginal shelter
Fibre to metal: Mudlark Jilinbirri Metals from Carnarvon - Jilinbirri is the Yamatji word for an Australian bird, also known as the mudlark in Western Australia. It is the title of an exhibition by Yamatji fibre artists whose work was transformed into bronze.
From the Top End down: An Adrienne Kneebone story - Kevin Murray talks with Adrienne Kneebone, one of a generation of fibre artists who emerged from the Northern Territory scene in the 2000s.
“Who’s Nalda?” The influence of Eileen Keys and Pantjiti Mary McLean 🎧 - Kevin Murray talks with Nalda Searles about the major influences in her artistic development.
Her Journey and our empty cups: Fiona Gavino in Escolta - Dayang Yraola traces Fiona Gavino's post-colonial journeys through Manila.
Wakuwal: Threads of reconciliation - Peter Botsman's Wakuwal braids together the fibre traditions of Yolngu like Batumbil Burarrwanga with the journey of Irish prisoners to Australia
Full circle: Tjanpi, Polyglot and FORM’s Manguri Wiltja project - Andrew Nicholls writes about FORM's project with Tjanpi and Polyglot Theatre that discovered the wiltja as a symbol of home.
How much has your year been worth? Bridget Kennedy exhibition - Our Love and Money issue identified the importance of non-monetary value in what we make. One of the themes emerging from the Garland journey is the value of labour in its own terms, not only as an expression of love but also as a way of thinking and being together.
Sgraffito Country: the ceramic art of Penny Evans - Freja Carmichael visits Penny, who uses sgraffito in her ceramics to reflect her Kamilaroi/Gomeroi heritage.
A revolution from the kitchen at Rumah Intaran - We chat with Gede Kresna about his place in north Bali, Rumah Intaran, which practices a "revolution from the kitchen' in reviving traditional Balinese ways of living.
From Sumatra to Bellbrae: A Jenny Crompton story - Jenny Crompton travelled to Sumatra where she learnt wood carving from a traditional datu spirit man. This gave her an appreciation of culture, but it wasn't her own. On discovering her Wadawurrung ancestry, she has developed a unique language of art from the kelp of the coast that is both her inspiration and rediscovered Country.
The plaited craft that holds a Dayak village together - Stephanie Brookes visits the Dayak village of Bukit Rawi where she finds Mina Herta who shares her knowledge of rattan weaving that is so important for the Ot Danum tribe.
Bridewealth of the Dayak Lundayeh - Karen Macdonald with Paulus Kadok describe a marriage ceremony in a Dayak village of Kalimantan. With help from John Boyd McDonald's photos, they show how the adat rituals involving textile and fibres crafts remain a vivid part of their cultural life.
Quarterly Essay: Remembering the string figures of Yirrkala✿ - Robyn McKenzie discovers a mysterious trove of books about string figures. To understand their meaning today, she travels to Yirrkala and learns slowly how to create these figures for herself. But it is only by making them into a static art product, through printmaking, that she is able to engage the community. What unfolds is a revelation of thinking through string.
Weaving land and people: the Gwen Egg story - In the third article about contemporary fibre artists, we venture south to explore the world of Gwen Egg. Egg’s life in fibre testifies to its power as a medium for binding the land with its peoples.
Bamboo Exposed: the art of Hafu Matsumoto - Mari Iizuka and Shoko Aono write about Hafu Matsumoto and his masterly dialogue with bamboo
An invitation to create: The Deeper Voice of Textiles - Tim Johnson tells of a project inviting men from widely different businesses to "play" with the materials of their trade, using timeless basketmaking techniques.
Remembering the string figures of Yirrkala - Robyn McKenzie discovers a mysterious trove of books about string figures. To understand their meaning today, she travels to Yirrkala and learns slowly how to create these figures for herself. But it is only by making them into a static art product, through printmaking, that she is able to engage the community. What unfolds is a revelation of thinking through string.
Paying the school fees: Bolga baskets in Ghana - NGO TradeAid is based in Bolgatanga, in the Upper East region of Ghana. Its goal is to end poverty in the northern regions. We hear from the weavers about the value of Bolga baskets in the lives of themselves and those they care for.
Fragile threads: Baskets reborn in north Queensland - In the first of a series of articles, Kevin Murray takes an overview of fibre practice in north Queensland. He finds a number of remarkable individuals who, despite lack of support, sustain unique fibre techniques to produce work of remarkable beauty and personal meaning.
Craft classic: Jawun - We learn from Abe Muriata about the making of the “Jawun”, a bicornual basket, which is a handsome object made from cane found in the rainforest and revered icon of Australian material culture. We also hear from Brisbane architect Christina Waterson what it is like to live with a jawun. 
Objects for an Unknown Future Museum - Sally Simpson's Venerated Remains are powerful evocations of an ancient world, yet one that happens to be from a recent manmade lake returning to its natural state. Kim Mahood finds in Sally's work an important expression of the non-indigenous relation to land, which reflects both the desire for a foundational history and the settler sense of non-belonging.
The Bolga basket: Ahmedabad comes to Accra - The purpose of the initiative is to adapt sensitively basket-making traditions, practices and challenges facing Africa’s women basket weavers, through drawing on the experience and knowledge of India’s traditional craft and highly developed design sectors.
Binga baskets and other treasures of Zimbabwean craft - Leah Mugwagwa celebrates Zimbabwean crafts, particularly the Binga basket.
Ruth Castle, Basket Maker - Damian Skinner presents an iconic basket maker from New Zealander and considers her use of imported materials.
Learning and sharing traditional plant knowledge - Penny Algar and Lorraine Connelly-Northey talk about the importance of river red gum and what inspired the Murray River Cloak.
Yilaalu – objects for carrying stories - Lucy Simpson interprets the Yuwaalaraay word 'Yilaalu' as an art installation to touch and behold.