Heather MacKenzie is a member and also board of directors member at the Weavers Guild of Minnesota. Learn more about her and her work in this spotlight!
WGM’s mission is simple but profound, encompassing many lifetimes of deep skill. I find it powerful because of the ways that all of us collaborate to embody the mission. The knowledge that the Guild preserves and advances is living knowledge, contained within the minds and muscle memory of the hundreds of members who form the body of the organization.
We are in contact with textiles almost from the moment of our birth. We learn to appraise fabric for texture, weight, and flexibility both visually and through touch. This education is informal and non-verbal. I think that gaining knowledge more intentionally around spinning, dyeing, and weaving, we can empower ourselves in the world as consumers and as members of our communities.
I believe deeply in WGM’s educational model, and that this model fosters a sense of community. The Guild is steeped in knowledge around hands-on skills and materials. As a board member, I hope to be an advocate for the organization, increasing its reach and expanding access to knowledge, specifically among younger members.
This is my first time being a member of a Guild. I became a member of WGM after attending several lectures and meetings last winter where I felt engaged and included. In my own practice, I am an artist and a hand-weaver with a particular interest in multi-layered woven structures. I love trying to push what can be made within the grid of warp and weft, exploring the possibilities of creating three-dimensional objects that unfold directly off of the loom. Someday I hope to found a collectives studio around a hand-operated digital Jacquard loom.
Heather’s website: http://cargocollective.com/hmackenzie