MEET OUR FEBRUARY ARTIST-IN-RESIDENCE: HANNAH WATSON

Hannah is a collector and creator of textiles from both around the world and from her family ancestral treasures. At a young age, she realized just how creatively activated she became from everyday sensual experiences with various material; however, cloth was the one that always seemed to stand out. Photo-documenting backpacking trips in North Carolina, Oregon, Washington, Alaska, Arizona, Maine, and finally Peru has provided her a plethora of visual inspiration of which to draw upon for her textile creations. Since her teenage years, she has worked developing her craft as a seamstress & patternmaker for theater departments in costume technology, small start-up fashion businesses creating homegrown clothes, a nonprofit in the Sacred Valley, Peru designing textile goods alongside Quechua weavers, and most recently delving into her own art & freelance practices while living in a yurt / studio in southern Appalachia. She received her B.S. in Cultural Anthropology from the College of Charleston in 2013 with a focus on weaving traditions and ethnobotany. Her explorations in the coming years involve furthering her knowledge of natural dye chemistry, complex weave structure on floor looms, and the mystic realm as it relates to weaving traditions. Her hope is to create a
collaborative & experimental textile company merging traditional processes with the starry notions of innovation.

Indigo Bloodmoon Story
In September of 2015, after just having moved into an 18 foot diameter yurt nestled in a holler of Madison County, North Carolina, I could feel a shift happening. I was becoming awakened to the inspiration that lay in the clear fall night skies that signified a closing chapter. The skies that month graced us with not only a super moon, but with a total lunar eclipse to boot. This super blood moon, I’m convinced, caused a brief period of insomnia that led to the creation of this woven piece. I buried a portion of my fears tied to being an artist in the wilderness the night I started to weave this piece. The wool warp was a gift from a friend I met while working in Peru designing textiles. Upon my return to the states, I learned the process of indigo dyeing from a woman running her own indigo design company in South Carolina. After acquiring and dyeing the wool, the prodding desire to learn to weave resulted in another woman offering me her cricket loom, or a 10” little table loom, to get started with the beginnings of weaving. All the bits and pieces of this project, including the gracious women helping me along to realize my vision & the required skill sets, came slow but steady over the course of two years. This woven only made sense as an homage to lady moon stirring and carrying our hearts into
unknown, yet emboldened territory.