I am now home from Italy and had an extraordinary time! I really struggle for words that will express what I am feeling about the experience.I began my journey with a couple of fabulous days in Florence. My next post will be all about Florence as I try to cobble together my images and get them transferred from ipad to computer and hope it will convey in some way my impression of this spectacular place.
From Florence began the second part of my trip...my reason for coming to Italy (I say "coming" because I like to pretend I am still there...and part of me still is!). As I have mentioned I was invited by DHG for a solo exhibition and a workshop and "day one" in Prato began with a tour.
So we begin. Get your coffee and your nuno felted throw blanket and get comfortable...
Arriving in PRATO! Love at first sight. Gaia, my wonder-host who "is" DHG zipped me around in her mini cooper Italian style... a master of spacial awareness as you need to be to drive and park in Italy.
And here I am below arriving at "the dye house". The group of companies operates more than one, but this is where the fibres are dyed for DHG as well as many other clients
Welcome! This is the DHG Dye House. Up the winding road past olive groves. An beautiful old stone building houses the offices and where the chemists work at desks and the large additions are the dyeing area.
Solar panels and Hydro power mean this is an eco friendly operation. The common fibre of tradition and innovation has found it's way into so many aspects of my trip.
...This is then all made in a sample all computerized for absolute precision! A tiny mistake in the sample equals a big mistake in the larger scale, if you can imagine. They dye many very precious fibres....no margin for error!
Rrrrr...Rrrr...Rrrr... (as accurate as I can be)
Depending on what is going in the bath, the framework holding the fibres varies. For the roving, it is structured for uniform results (as they all are, I suppose!) allowing the dye to penetrate all the way through.
I call this "the fluffer". I am sure it has a proper name. If named by an engineer, maybe it is the XJ943-6. I prefer "the fluffer"
Huge containers of roving in the superwash area. Hard not to paw!
Wool. Wool. Wool.
Taken from this DHG page...I love this image so much. I think as a feltmaker, I too consider the "roots", the tradition of the makers before me. How do I carry this with me in a contemporary world creating contemporary art? What do you carry forward and where do you innovate?
No matter what for me it is about the material and need for the making and, on par, it is about people and communication. It is about love too...something you feel so deeply and are so driven by that you are compelled and consumed. So much to think about and process!
My next posts (today and/or tomorrow) will take you through Florence AND the rest of my unforgettable DHG experience. Stay tuned!
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