Embroidery: Material as Storyteller

3 credits

What makes the needle and thread such captivating storytellers? Embroidery: Material as Storyteller is a space for students to explore the narrative potential of traditional and digital embroidery. Through lectures, workshops, and discussions, as well as a visit to the Costume + Textile Collection at the RISD Museum, this course aims to equip students with a comprehensive understanding and a solid skill set in embroidery, textile materials, and narrative techniques. With a theme centered on illustrative and narrative embroidery, we will experiment with threads, patches, and found fabrics through additive, subtractive, and collaging techniques. Additionally, we will explore the narrative potential in e-textiles and smart embroidery, creating responsive embroidery pieces from a radical, critical, and situated perspective. Open-ended prompts will be interspersed with in-class projects, and students will acquire hand and digital embroidery skills to apply to assignments. We will look at artworks from a diverse range of artists, such as Dindga McCannon, Iviva Olenick, Irene Saputra, Han Cao, Orly Cogan, Nneka Jones, Alexandra Drenth, Michelle Kingdom, Katia Shumkova, Ana Torma, Ana Teresa Barboza, Elsa María Meléndez, Richard Saja. The final week of Wintersession will bring together the themes from previous class lectures and projects while also providing space for additional solo exploration.