Friday, April 20, 2012

Jaworska"s loom has a new home

A couple of Months a go I came across an add referring to a loom for sale. After inquiring a little bit more, I found out that it was not just A loom. It was the wonderful historical artifact in which Tamara Jaworska had made most of her wonderful tapestry production. As you all know,
Tamara Jaworska is the most renowned Canadian fiber artist and weaver in the discipline of tapestry/gobelin, Her amazing tapestries have won her national and international recognition.

Her skill as an artist-weaver belongs to the disciplines that were born more than five hundred years ago, while the pictorial essence of her tapestries is pure twentieth-century: dynamic and original in design, splendid in colours and filled with new and surprising forms. "Tamara Jaworska is an artist whose gobelin-tapestries reflect the sensibility, intelligence and vigor of a dynamic personality" wrote Glen E. Cumming.

Being a weaver for such a long time you learn that tapestry is a slow, meditative art expression. It relates to get closer to your loom. Being immersed into your work for months and months, this artifact becomes part of you. It is precisely when I realized that this loom has an essence of its own. Tamara had woven more than 100 tapestries in this precise instrument.
First I received a note from a friend of mine and wonderful weaver, Kate Kitchen. She sent me all the information and encouraged me to think about it. She knew about my interest in teaching and in sharing the experience of weaving with peers, colleagues and friends.
Honestly, as much as I wanted, it was just a matter of wanting. For several reasons I though twice. First of all, the economical factor was one of the most important issues. Not that this loom was worth each cent of it, it is the fact that I am starting my own Art school and it required quite an investment for me already.

Secondly, the space factor: back in my Country, Mexico, I owned a private textile school where I offered all different kinds of textile approaches. I knew the space required for these types of looms, for I had 7 of these, and living in different parts it is not easy to allocate them, sell them, or even give them away for free. They can use almost one full room, which with my art school I am already committed to restrict the space available.

Thirdly, relating to health, I have been struggling with a tendinitis on my right elbow that needs to be addressed sometime soon....
So as you see, the decision was not easy. As much as I wanted to revive the energy and try to get as much as I could from Tamara's good and wonderful vibes, my decision to pass on this opportunity was just fast to say.
However, weeks passed and I was just not comfortable on this decision. In my studio, the oakville Tapestry Studio, all the members where as excited as I was still just by the thought of being close to this loom. I has nightmares, dreams, thoughts....all came to me all at the same time.
I was thinking: well, the money I don't have, but what if I do an effort. This would be really worth the time and thought put into this. I am a person who loves to teach, and it was precisely one of the conditions that Monica Schut, great artist and the previous soul keeper of this wonderful piece and friend of Tamara's, who had in her possession the loom for over 15 years made as a request.
She mentioned to me at the first interview with her, that what Tamara wanted was to make this loom a significant tool for new generations to learn from.
This is not only one single loom. It was manufactured and custom made for Tamara from one of the most important builders from Poland. It was made of a special Polish hard wood tree and brought by boat over 40 years ago. Tamara had made all the specifications to have it made exactly as she required to weave large scale tapestries.
Weeks again passed by and I had no other than to think of this wonderful loom, and just the thought that it might be going to to another studio, it just made me so sad.
That week, the odds where on my side. I managed to sell 2 tapestries and that was the signal! This loom had to be for our Studio. Where other people would take advantage of the use and just to see it operating it again was a wonderful idea. But where? Space was another important issue. There came Stella. One wonderful member of our Studio who immediately jumped into the emergency:She said: " I have room, I have my basement where I have all my art studio "...I have to say that Stella not only is a wonderful weaver, jewelery designer, but a quilter, painter, bead work and needle weaving...among many other crafts, she is a truly giving person.
 I could not believe this! Everything just had such an energy to have this loom brought into our lives. Into life again!
I have loved large scale for a long time. Our Studio is now in the beginning of exploring the large format, and what better that by using this magnificent loom.

Here I am with Monica, who showed us all of Tamara s works, awards, posters and images that came together with the loom.
 Below is one of Tamara's Quartet Series. Magnificent in image and stunning to see them live at the First Canadian Bank.

More images still to come, but for now let me share these ones. Here in the picture is Yamile, Stella, Petar, Myriam and Mari Carmen. All together we brought piece by piece the loom into the basement. it creates a warm atmosphere already.

Thank you guys for making this dream come true.