Celebrating American Tapestry Biennial 8


It’s always exciting whenever we open a new exhibit at the Museum. I’m amazed at the variety of shows that have been offered at ATHM since we reopened in June 2009. We’ve been treated to mesmerizing quilts, quirky aprons, a touching Cambodian tribute, beautiful haute couture, and much more. Currently, American Tapestry Biennial 8 is up in both the Lowell Sun Charities and Stevens Galleries, and I’m just as captivated.

American Tapestry Biennial 8 features 64 tapestries from 54 artists around the world. At a preview reception for the exhibit, a dozen of the featured artists were on hand to discuss the technique behind tapestry weaving and the inspiration behind the chosen pieces on display. Artists traveled from as close as New England to as far away as France to attend the reception, and it was such a pleasure to meet each of them.


A series of public programs is being offered in conjunction with the exhibit. The lectures are free and open to the public, no reservations required. We hope that you will join us!

Tapestry Weaving: An Artist at Work
Sunday, February 13, 2pm

Featured artist Janet Austin demonstrates the techniques used to create the venerable art form of tapestry weaving. Enjoy an opportunity to talk with the artist/weaver and see how tapestry weaving is done. See how various techniques are used and try weaving on a tapestry yourself!

Under the Influence; Or is it just Inspiration?
Sunday, March 13, 2pm

Featured artist Susan Martin-Maffei explores the effect of textile history, both of the past and personal, on the creative process and growth of her own work in tapestry. Her path, including an overseas internship, commercial studio work, and gallery conservation of antique textiles provides insights into the development of the artist/weaver of the 21st century.

Knotted Tapestries
Sunday, April 10, 2pm

Featured artist Anne Jackson makes vibrant, complex tapestries exploring contemporary ideas, often in a historical context. Focusing on her current project, “The Witchcraft Series,” her illustrated talk will cover the development of her work and take a wry look at the place of textiles in the art world.

Bodies of Work
Sunday, May 1, 2pm

Focusing on the human form in tapestry, Micala Sidore examines the history of tapestry weaving from an Andean culture in 500 BCE to the present. For both newcomers to tapestry and those in-the-know, she suggests an approach to viewing tapestries, understanding what makes them successful, and appreciating the weaver’s work.

Programming for the American Tapestry Biennial 8 is sponsored in part by the American Tapestry Alliance in association with Tapestry Weavers in New England.

Maren Caulfield
Coordinator of Membership and Development

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