Symposium – October 19, 2019 9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.

A daylong series of artists’ and scholars’ Provocations: 10-minute lightning talks that explore the histories, presents and futures of textiles across many sites, with a focus on Tiohtiá:ke/Montreal as a locus of trade across cultures, nations, fibres and moments. Presenters consider Indigenous textile traditions; the role of textiles in colonialism; discussions of local or global labour and environmental textile implications; artistic and technological innovations in textiles; and speculative spheres.

Participation is free and open to all, and includes morning coffee, lunch, and afternoon snacks, but requires pre-registration via Eventbrite.

A Provocation is a 10-minute artist’s talk, a scholarly presentation or a short performance, linked to one of four broad themes whose guiding questions might be:

Dynamics of Appropriation: How do textile practices and traditions move across territories and makers? What are the ethical considerations around cultural collaboration and reinterpretation? Can resources and profits be shared? Can textile labour practices be just? How can animal and environmental rights be integrated into our work?

Trade and Mobilities: How do textile practices and industries encourage connection via social and economic structures? Promote the movement of peoples and goods across territories? Who benefits from trade and mobility; what limitations might we redress? How can textiles help us connect with each other in this time of great human displacements and refugee migrations?

Infrastructures and Continuities: What is the value of the historic buildings, mills and equipment made redundant through post-industrialization and internationalization of production? How do we value and re-imagine the past? What about the people whose jobs and towns are forever changed? The environments that have been degraded?

Environment and Change: From ‘fast fashion’ to individual artistic practice, all work has an environmental impact: to what extent do we aim to increase sustainability in making and teaching textile practices? What do textiles have to offer discussions of climate change and extreme species extinction? What changes and innovations in textile practices might lead to a more inclusive, just and interesting future?

PDF of Full Symposium Program