Including keynote speakers, practical sessions, demonstrations, talks, and a Saturday evening dinner. Guilds Gathering 2020 will differ from previous biennial conferences as it is no longer linked with the Association AGM. Guilds in the West Midlands Region are organising this event in which we hope the speakers will stimulate, motivate and instruct us with their depth of knowledge about colour and there will also be some practical activities.
The theme of colour was chosen as it is relevant to our three core crafts, weaving, spinning and dyeing. The weekend will also include a Certificate of Achievement assessment and display plus a talk about the Association Foundation Courses from the coordinator.
We hope it will be a relaxed and friendly weekend with opportunities to meet up and share time and skills with like minded people. Accommodation at our venue, the University of Worcester, is modern and very pleasant.
Registration will open in January 2020 and close in March 2020. Anticipated costs are £230 (weekend ticket including accommodation) and £158 (weekend ticket excluding accommodation).
A draft programme for the event (Draft Programme PDF) is available for download. Please note that this is still subject to change.
The speakers are:
Margo Selby is an internationally renowned textile artist and designer. Her design philosophy is focused on pushing the boundaries of weaving to create contemporary stylish fabrics for a range of textile applications, uniting the very best weavers and high quality fibres to produce beautifully crafted products. Margo trained in textile design at Chelsea College of Art and Design and then followed this with a postgraduate degree at The Royal College of Art, graduating in 2001. On graduating Margo initially worked as a woven textile designer for industrial mills. It was during this time she united her innovative hand-woven constructions with industrial machinery to create the unique 3-dimensional fabrics that were to become the trademark of the Margo Selby Brand.
Margo’s expertise in weaving is central to all the product development. Although the design process begins with hand-woven textile concepts, 15 years of designing for Jacquard woven textiles has honed Margo’s understanding of graphic design. An ongoing fascination with mathematics is revealed in both the precise geometric pattern making and the systematised process of weaving. Alongside her commercial textile design business Margo also creates distinctive handwoven artworks which unite a modernist aesthetic with traditional weaving techniques.
“I draw influence from the visual world around me; architectural forms, graphic design, pattern, scale and colour grouping. Colour is a driving force behind my work. I play with the juxtaposition of simple forms, manipulating the use of both complementary and contrasting colour palettes, applying a combination of colour theory and instinct. I’m interested in the relationship between man and machine, hand and industry, craft and technology. The loom and the disciplined nature of weaving provides boundaries and constraints which can be pushed against. The orderly nature of the craft of weaving is reflected".
Dr Susan Kay-Williams is the Chief Executive of the Royal School of Needlework, a post she has held for 12 years. During that time she has overseen the development of the RSN Degree in hand embroidery, the Future Tutor programme and the significant expansion of the organisation as well as reinforcing its role as the international centre of excellence for the art of hand embroidery.
In her spare time she researches colour in textiles and her first book was The Story of Colour in textiles. In 2015 she was recognised by the Society of Dyers and Colourists and made a Fellow. She speaks about colour and other textile areas around the world including in the US, China, Japan, Taiwan and Europe.
Alison Daykin is an award winning textile designer who has exhibited widely across the UK and Europe. She has been tutoring workshops for the past 35 years, has taught at three Association of Guilds of Weavers, Spinners & Dyers Summer Schools and at numerous Guilds across the UK. Alison is co-author of Creative Spinning.
Daniel Harris is the founder of the London Cloth Company established in October 2011, the first micro-mill to open in London for 50 years or so. The Company first came into being when Daniel rescued a rusting loom from an old barn in rural Wales. With absolutely no training or prior knowledge of weaving, he dismantled and re-assembled machines that hadn’t been touched for 30 years, quickly teaching himself the workings and intricacies of the various parts. The Company’s looms have been rescued from all over the UK, and date from as early as 1870 up to 1994.
More recently, Daniel has opened a further mill on the Worcestershire/Herefordshire border, and, as an optional extra, the 2020 Guild Gathering will provide an opportunity to visit the mill on the Sunday afternoon after the Conference closes.