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The Poetics of Textiles

  • Net Loft Building #6-1666 Johnston Street Vancouver BC V6H 3S2 Canada (map)
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With Tim McLaughlin

$15 - Doors open at 7:30

Like all great arts, textiles recreate our vision of the world. We hold them up as exemplars of skill, ingenuity, creativity, and ambition. Textiles are poetic metaphors woven from ideas just as much as they are physical items woven from fibres. 

For more than 15 years, Tim McLaughlin has been working to help tell the story of textiles — in video documentaries, publications, photos, exhibitions, and media. This work has been collaborative and far-reaching. In many ways it can also be seen as an extension of Tim’s background in the arts and sciences and his personal projects. 

Tim will draw on these projects, as well as his research, writing, and considerable experience with Maiwa, to argue for textiles as carriers of meaning that are more important today than ever before.

Tim will also teach a workshop.


Tim McLaughlin has been interested in natural colour since he began working for Maiwa as a graphic designer in 2002. Together with Charllotte Kwon he has written and co-directed two documentaries on natural dyes: Indigo: A World of Blue and In Search of Lost Colour: The Story of Natural Dyes. Recently he has been rethinking the study of natural dyes in a fine-arts context: how to use natural dyes to make inks, paints, and pigments.

Tim has also worked as a writer, graphic designer, and photographer. His portraits of Banjara women can be found in Textiles of the Banjara: Cloth and Culture of a Wandering Tribe, published in 2016 by Thames and Hudson and co-authored by Tim with Charllotte Kwon.

His ink-related interests may be found at atramentum.org and @artisan_ink.

Earlier Event: October 15
Material & Process in Perfect Union
Later Event: October 17
Creative Block Printing