Woven Symbols, Global Patterns

  • Net Loft Building #6 - 1666 Johnston Street Vancouver, BC, V6H 3S2 Canada

$15 - Doors open at 7:30

Join textile artists Sara Goodman and Mary Zicafoose for a joint lecture exploring weaving, pattern, long-distance collaboration, and ethical production.

Even though Sara and Mary live hundreds of miles apart, they often come together to collaborate on both artistic projects and organizational ones, such as the Goodweave Foundation (an NGO whose mission is to stop child labour in the carpet industry).

Mary will open with a discussion of symbols, colour, and the power of cloth. With particular emphasis on woven motifs and their cultural importance, Mary will detail her own weft ikat production in which she seeks to unravel and evolve visual codes of archetypal symbols through the creation of transformative textiles.

Sara Goodman will be familiar to the Maiwa audience for her work with the plant mordant, Symplocos. The Bebali Foundation of Indonesia seeks not only to offer symplocos as an organic mordant but to do so in a way that provides sustainable livelihoods for indigenous peoples. In this lecture Sara will talk about how her own artistic practice led to travel and involvement in Indonesia, Nepal, Mexico, Guatemala, and India.

In the final portion of the lecture, Mary and Sara will take the stage together to explain their unique collaborative partnership. Join us for an inspiring lecture, presented by two groundbreaking artists who have had a profound impact on the textile traditions and practices of artisans worldwide.

Sara and Mary will also teach a workshop.


Sara Goodman is a textile artist with a lifelong interest in ikat, shibori, and resist dyeing techniques. She has travelled widely to study artisans and their textiles in such places as Guatemala, Mexico, Japan, Indonesia, Nepal, India, and China. In October 2015 Sara was a member of the faculty for SDA’s (Surface Design Association) conference on natural dyes. Her work has been featured in Handwoven, Shuttle Spindle and Dyepot, and Upper Valley Life Magazine as well as the Surface Design Journal. Her wearables have been in the fashion shows at Convergence, the Handweavers Guild of America conference, and at the Surface Design Association conference.In addition to her creative work, Sara is involved in the promotion of Symplocos (a plant-based mordant) through the Bebali Foundation and is a former director of Goodweave (dedicated to eliminating child labour in the carpet industry).

Mary Zicafoose is a master at weft ikat, a complex design dye/weave process, that has stimulated new directions in the field of contemporary tapestry. Her work has been represented in the International Triennial of Tapestry, Lodz, Poland; Museo de Textil, Oaxaca, Mexico; China National Silk Museum, Hangzhou; and the collections of more than a dozen United States embassies abroad. Her education includes a BFA from St. Mary's College, Notre Dame, Indiana, with graduate studies at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and the University of Nebraska. A 2016 USA Artist Fellowship nominee, Mary is Co-Director Emeritus of the American Tapestry Alliance and board chair of the Omaha Union for Contemporary Art. Extensive exhibition, teaching, and lecture engagements include the de Young Museum, San Francisco; Penland School of Craft, Penland, NC; Arrowmont School of Arts and Crafts, Gatlinburg, TN; and universities, conferences, and textile programs worldwide. www.maryzicafoose.com