Ten lucky students attended the 3 day workshop by Alex Friedman on her “Ripple Technique”. The basic idea is to use eccentric weft in a manner to create a sculptural effect when the tapestry is released from tension. For examples of her work, please visit her website at www.alexfriedmantapestry.com.
We each came prepared with a four-inch-wide warp on a portable tapestry loom. The weft, provided by the school, was Harrisville Highland. Alex brought a picture book of examples she had woven, as well as a hand-drawn sketch with ideas to use to start.
Students wove a plain tapestry background, then added eccentric weft in several styles, similar to but different than wedge weave.
After trying a few methods, some people attempted Soumak for an even greater surface distortion.
On the second day students wove designs they had contemplated overnight. One person wove a tablecloth with a loaf of bread on it. Another wove a pattern similar to the bark of a birch tree. A third wove a mountain shape. Everyone’s tapestry looked very different than the others, in design, in color, in eccentricity.
On the third day we continued weaving our designs and tried more experiments. The class was very popular and a total success. Students accomplished quite a bit of weaving, surprising even the instructor in quantity and quality. Thank you, Alex, for coming up from Marin County, CA and visiting our school. We definitely enjoyed the workshop.