Our Fibers program offers a rich intersection, not only between faculty and students, but also through our promotion of creative research rich in cross-cultural, historical and contemporary issues in fiber work as it relates to contemporary art, craft and design practices. Students explore a wide range of approaches to surface and structure by engaging in the intersection of traditional innovations and technological applications. Courses in the Fibers program challenge sensibilities while cultivating collaboration, aesthetic development and critical thinking around material culture and making.
Under the guidance of nationally and internationally recognized faculty members and a dedicated area technician, students enjoy active mentorship and professional opportuities. Supplementing the studio experience, students are connected to internships (with industry, textile production studios or fiber artists) and the student organization, the Fibers Collective.
The program offers access to large, well-equipped studios and professional instruction to support studies in structures: on and off-loom strategies (weaving, spinning, felting, netting, knitting); and surfaces: safe dye practices utilizing resists, chemical and natural resources, direct applications (embroidery, marbling, screen-printing, silk painting, cyanotype); and experimentations with combinations of techniques. Students learn how to use and maintain a computerized APQS long-arm quilting machine, computerized knitting machines, floor and compu-dobby looms and a large format digital fabric printer. Students find inspiring challenges and potential in these technologies and techniques, resulting in outcomes ranging from two to four dimensions. Outside the studio, students maintain and harvest in the university’s sustainable dye garden for studio projects.
The Fibers minor is designed to encourage students from all areas of the university to explore working in fibers. Students pursuing the BFA complete a final project related to an exhibition of original and focused creative research project. The MFA program integrates creative research, contemporary theory and practice culminating in a thesis exhibition.