Chiaki Maki

The Alchemy of Weaving

1+1+1
A project by Elena Quarestani
with Marco Sammicheli

April- May 2019

Chiaki Maki

The Alchemy of Weaving

1+1+1
A project by Elena Quarestani
with Marco Sammicheli

April- May 2019

from April 3 to May 11
Wednesday to Saturday, from 15:00 to 19:00 and by appointment

The Alchemy of weaving - Chiaki Maki ©Giovanni Hänninen

Guided tours:
Saturday 11 May – at 4:00 and 6:00pm
Info & booking: info@assab-one.org

Chiaki Maki, textile designer, trained at universities in both Japan and the United States, after which she traveled to many countries around the world in search of the roots of weaving. In her workshop on the slopes of the Himalayas, conceived together with Bijoy Jain (founder of Studio Mumbai), every square centimeter has been touched by the hand of man. There, through strictly natural processes, she makes precious yarns that she then composes, creating pictorial textiles. Her work is characterised by natural pigments, as well as the reaction of colours to light and matter. The combination of her artistic vein with traditional craftsmanship and the resources of nature inspired the exhibition’s title The Alchemy of Weaving. She lives and works in both Tokyo and Dehradun. This is her first exhibition in Italy

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“When I was studying at the Rhode Island school of Design, I experienced a moment while weaving in which I was disappearing. Only the act of weaving remained. The piece produced by that experience was extraordinary, beyond any possible description.

That moment became the heart and the meaning of my work.

When touching the yarns, when dyeing with the plants, when throwing the shuttles, no matter where I am, in India, Japan or the United States, I disappear. Emptiness occurs, the absence of thought, this is what allows me to create.

In composing my works, I only use natural pigments — I try to cultivate almost everything I need to obtain them — and all my yarns are handspun using methods that are ancientand instruments that are beautiful to look at, to touch and produce hypnotic sounds and rhythms.

I like playing with the yarns, letting them be free even on the loom. The various yarns all have their own specific character; they adapt and change when close to each other. I like to observe how they react when differing tensions are placed upon them and when their situations are changed.

I’m fascinated and curious to discover how the fabrics I created for this exhibition at Assab One will react to this space, to this new light, to this environment that for them is unknown.”

Biography

Chiaki Maki, textile designer, lives and works in both India and Japan. After graduating from the Musashino Art University, she continued her studies at the Rhode Island School of Design. From there, she began her research in several countries where the practice of weaving is part of the local population’s daily life.

After years spent in India producing original hand-woven fabrics, Chiaki, together with Bijoy Jain, founder of Studio Mumbai, created the Ganga Maki textile studio, an extraordinary laboratory high in the foothills of the Himalayas. In this special place, where every built square centimeter was touched by the hand of a man or a woman, she extended her practice to the entire production cycle, allowing her creative streak to flourish. Here, before arriving at the loom, every phase, from the cultivation of fibers and natural pigments to the production of yarns, is carried out with natural procedures, following the rhythm of the seasons, to create colours, yarns and compositions of exceptional uniqueness.

  • The Alchemy of weaving - Chiaki Maki ©Giovanni Hänninen
  • The Alchemy of weaving - Chiaki Maki ©Giovanni Hänninen
  • The Alchemy of Weaving - Chiaki Maki

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