‘Threads of Our Lives’ headed to American Folk Festival, Maine libraries
“Threads of Our Lives: Maine Folk Fiber Art,” featuring demonstrations and exhibition panels highlighting the diversity of the fiber arts statewide, will debut at the American Folk Festival in Bangor, Aug. 27–28, sponsored by the Maine Folklife Center at the University of Maine.
The exhibit and more artist demonstrators, supported by a $1,400 grant from the Maine Arts Commission, will then be featured this fall at libraries in Houlton, Bangor and Lewiston. In 2017, the exhibit panels will be available to all Maine libraries through the state’s interlibrary loan system.
The following Maine textile artists will demonstrate at the American Folk Festival:
- Noon–12:45 p.m., Jennifer Neptune, Old Town: Penobscot beader
- 12:55–1:40 p.m., Simin Khosravani, Glenburn: Khosravani apprentice weaver
- 1:50–2:35 p.m., Panel: fiber arts in literature and life, led by Sarah Harlan-Haughey of Orono
- 2:45–3:30 p.m., TBA
- 3:40–4:25 p.m., Kavya Seshachar, Cape Elizabeth: Indian crocheter
- 4:30–5 p.m., Fashion Show: bring your wearable homemade fiber art to show
- Noon–12:45 p.m., Stephanie Crossman, Vinalhaven: netting artist
- 12:55–1:40 p.m., Kavya Seshachar, Cape Elizabeth: Indian crocheter
- 1:45–2:15 p.m., Fashion Show: bring your wearable homemade fiber art to show
- 2:25–3:10 p.m., Panel: fiber arts in literature and life led by Sarah Harlan-Haughey of Orono
- 3:20–4:05 p.m., Simin Khosravani, Glenburn: Khosravani apprentice weaver
- 4:15–5 p.m., Jennifer Neptune, Old Town: Penobscot beader
The National Endowment for the Arts funded “Threads of Our Lives” with a $25,000 grant to the Maine Folklife Center to support fieldwork, exhibit preparation, and demonstrations. With NEA support, Maine Folklife Center staff and a graduate research assistant spent 12 months conducting field research and reviewing archival materials to develop the new traveling exhibit, featuring four freestanding panels with photographs and text describing traditional fiber arts from Maine.
The new fieldwork expands the collection of the Northeast Archives of Folklore and Oral History. The current collection includes artists documented for the “Remnants of Our Lives” traveling exhibit at the Hudson Museum in 1992, also funded by the National Endowment for the Arts, representing Maine’s historically significant Anglo American, Native American, Finnish and Franco American fiber artists. The newest fieldwork addresses the need to document the textile traditions of the state’s new Mainer populations.
In addition to the exhibition panels, staff members are preparing an online handbook that will give tips on how to plan an event related to the exhibit, list Maine fiber folk artists who are interested in demonstrating, and include transcripts and audio recordings of artists.
The Maine Folklife Center at UMaine is devoted to the documentation and study of the folklife and oral history of Maine and the region. More information is online.
Contact: Margaret Nagle, 207.581.3745