Barbara J. Walker

Two words describe my work:  fiber interlacements. It began over thirty years ago with weaving on a floor loom. Twenty years ago I added ply-splitting to my repertoire, an interlacement indigenous to northwest India, in which, instead of over and under, elements move through each other. Five years ago Japanese braiding (kumihimo) captured my imagination. My studio contains two floor looms, two braiding apparatuses (takadai and marudai), and a 4-ply cord maker for ply-splitting.

How do these methods relate to each other? How might they be combined in a piece? Answering these questions is my challenge. Interpreting these ancient techniques in a contemporary manner is my focus. No matter the technique I use, each piece is a puzzle to solve. What structure will make the elements interlace to achieve the result I envision? How many elements do I need? 

The common component in all of my work is thread. Be it silk, cotton, linen, or rayon, each thread will follow its path to completion. 

Categories: Weaving, Fiber