Students Part of a Research Project on Weaving
Researchers, students and alumni from HDK-Valand have come together around a research project about a tool for weaving. In March, some of them will be travelling to Estonia to exhibit their work.
MultiWeave is a weaving tool that is easy to use, doesn’t take much space and makes it possible to create three-dimensional works. Professor Maja Gunn at HDK-Valand’s Steneby Campus has been working on the tool through an international research project that also includes students and alumni. In March, some of them will travel to Tartu in Estonia, where there will be an exhibition of the works created through the project.
“A colleague and I are going as representatives of HDK-Valand together with two students,” says Gunn. “It was Kadi Pajupuu, a professor in Tartu, who initiated the project, and several other universities are involved as well.”
The project participants were introduced to the MultiWeave tool and then used it to create works of art. In Tartu, there will be an exhibition of the students’ work, and Professor Gunn will give a brief lecture together with her colleague Matilda Dominique on how they have worked with the tool. Later this year, the two will also co-author an article in a book about the tool and the project.
“We’re also going to do some field trips to learn about Estonian textile production,” says Gunn, “so there’s going to be a real exchange.”
One of the advantages of MultiWeave is that it’s relatively simple. HDK-Valand alumna Emilia Elfvik rebuilt the tool with cardboard and kebab skewers, and then wove blocks from paper yarn and linen that she assembled into a sculpture.
“I’ve been exploring the tool, you might say,” explains Elfvik. “That was the whole point of testing this tool. I work a lot with form and 3D, so this is a tool that suits me perfectly. Weaving turns out flat and requires a large surface to work with, but with this you use the same principles but you can work fast.”
Elise Westin is one of the two students from HDK-Valand that are participating in the project. She is in the second year of the Textile–Body–Space programme at the Steneby Campus. She says they were given a basic tool and were then allowed to freely modify and change it, and she chose a rather challenging expression for her work.
“It felt like a lot of work,” says Westin, “but in retrospect I think it was absolutely worth it.”
She thinks it’s going to be particularly fun to travel abroad and go to an opening, considering how limited such things have been in recent years.
“I felt like this is an opportunity you don’t get very often, especially now after these years of the pandemic, so I just felt like this is something I just can’t miss. I’m so happy for the opportunity to exhibit my work in another country, too.”
The project is still on-going, as the book will be published later, but the exhibition in Tartu sums up the first phase by presenting the objects made by the students. The hope is that the tool will continue to be used and in the future be integrated into the textile programmes at HDK-Valand.
“It’s been a good collaboration,” says Professor Gunn. “It’s good for our students to show what they can do abroad, good to have international collaborations, but also good for students to get involved in a research project. I believe that’s important in the long term as well – how we develop the programmes and show how research can play a role in the curriculum even at the undergraduate level.”
By: Henrik Sandgren
The project is run by Pallas University of Applied Sciences, Tartu in Estonia. Researchers and students from HDK-Valand are traveling to Tartu 9 March to take part in an exhibition together with students from several different countries. the result will also be compiled in a book.