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RAE 2008

Sir John Cass Department of Art, Media and Design


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JCAMD host major international textiles event

The Sir John Cass Department of Art, Media and Design (JCAMD) hosted the fourteenth bi-annual international conference in collaboration with the European Textile Network (ETN) on Digital Craft from 13 to 21 September 2007. Over 200 delegates from 74 institutions in 14 different countries attended the event.

A main conference programme was accompanied by a series of one, two and four-day workshops on the latest innovations in print, embroidery, weaving and laser cutting. Participants included representatives from Central St Martins College of Art, The Royal College of Art and other well-known London, national and international institutions.

An exhibition, On the Fringe, presented the outcomes of the collaborative research project undertaken by academic staff in JCAMD. The group, which includes Tracy Hunt, Janette Harris, Pat Moloney, Kaye Newman, Gina Pierce and Paula Ashbrooke, is concerned with the meeting of traditional craft methodologies and globally vital digital technologies.

The workshops were delivered by a combination of industry specialists and practicing artists. Vibeke Vestby of Norwegian Manufacturing company Tronrud Engineering ran a 4 day digital loom workshop in partnership with weave specialist Bhakti Ziek, a visiting assistant Professor at Arizona State University. Both were full of praise for the event. Vibeke said, " We had 13 in the workshop from organisations all over the world. The global textiles industry needs good design to get it back on track. By sharing technical expertise with creative practitioners we are creating an environment where that can happen". Bhakti was equally enthusiastic, praising both the team behind the event and the University for providing the facilities for the conference. She said, " These cutting edge techniques are really catching on thanks to this type of conference- it was incredible how much the students achieved in that short space of time. It was also great to have the chance to meet up with contacts from all over the world."

Michael Upton, Academic Leader at the department said, "We are delighted to have had the opportunity to work with the ETN on such a high profile and internationally significant event which links education, conservation and the manufacturing industry to mutual benefit. The conference, exhibition and workshops were a great success and testament to many months of hard work by our staff."

The ETN is a high profile organization, developed by the editors of the trade journal 'Textile Forum' to form international links between textile researchers, curators, practitioners, writers and students.

Find out more about the event here

back to News & Events Archive: September 2007

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