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The Future of Making

  • Net Loft Building #6-1666 johnston St Vancouver BC V6H 3S2 Canada (map)
The Future Of Making

With Charllotte Kwon and Tim McLaughlin

$15 - Doors open at 7:30

We tend to view artisan work in very particular ways. Traditional craft is executed by individuals, but the way an artifact looks—its form, its very identity as a “thing”—belongs to a community. Where do designers fit into this relationship?

After more than 30 years of working with communities of makers, Maiwa is seeing the basic understanding of artisan and community shift. Roles are being challenged by new conceptions of making. Online economies, intellectual property, branded content, and social media have reconfigured the fundamental relationships of craft. This is a strange and exciting time to consider who makes and who gets credit for making. 

This lecture will bring together insights from Maiwa’s intimate, hand-in-hand relationship with artisans and artisan communities. Join us as we trace the landscape of craft, describe how the territory is changing, and map the hopeful future.

Charllotte and Tim will also each teach a worksho and Tim will also give another lecture.

Charllotte Kwon is the owner of Maiwa Handprints Ltd. and the director of the Maiwa Foundation. Through Maiwa, Charllotte also runs a textile archive and research library located on Granville Island. Under her direction Maiwa has produced four documentary films and a number of print publications. She also guides Maiwa’s substantial web presence.

Charllotte travels extensively each year to research handcraft and to supplement her natural dye research. Always looking to extend natural dye use, she also teaches dyeing workshops with artisans around the world and has planned a series of natural dye master classes to bring exceptional practising artisans together.


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 and @artisan_ink.

Earlier Event: September 27
The Fedora Then & Now
Later Event: September 30
Motif, Design, Block Print & Dye