The year I finally got up the nerve to go to Guild School, I was part of the small percentage that did not get into my first choice classes. From what I remember, I didn’t get my second choices either, but the fact that I loved the classes I did get so much that I haven’t missed a year since, goes to show you just how strong the entire roster of classes is.
One of the classes I found myself in that year was a weaving class with Bonni Backe. I walked into the library of the Maine Maritime Academy to find 10 or 12 interesting looking table-top looms set up for us to use and by the end of the week, I was completely fascinated and had produced three pretty decent looking rugs.
Bonni is the artist behind Weevings the business she operates making and selling miniature woven rugs, bedspreads, towels and so many other items, most of them based in weaving, but not all of them strictly in the realm of textiles…snowshoes and wicker? Bonni is a Fellow member of the Guild, a position that made her eligible to apply for a grant from the Independent Study Program. IGMA established this program a decade or more ago in order to enable Fellow members to pursue a research project consistent with the Guild’s mission of promoting miniatures as an art form.
Bonni applied for and was awarded a study grant which she used to research Norwegian textiles-in Norway, spending three weeks in museums and thrift shops across the country, studying, photographing-and as I hear, buying textiles. She will be hosting a show and tell at Guild School this summer, sharing the knowledge she gained and displaying some of the pieces she found so inspiring. And, I expect that before long, we will see the inspiration reflected in some new pieces for sale.