Surface Design Association conference

Kathyann White taught her innovative digital printing method at the conference’s workshop series.

The Surface Design Association is a network of textile artists and designers based in America. Their annual conference just took place two weeks ago, and was full of talks and competitions. The competition judges included Jessica Hemmings, who was our thesis advisor, and Jennifer Angus, who I volunteered for once in San Francisco.

While in New York, we met a woman who was very excited about new textiles and was preparing to go to the SDA show in Kansas. It would be a pleasure to attend it in the future, since it seems like a place to find support and new ideas. This year’s title was “Off the Grid”, reflecting the theme of unexpected change that is so currently relevant.

“Patterns in our life and in our work often develop and repeat in a regular manner, and then something unexpected happens. Something shifts slightly and the pattern and rhythm become radically new. It is in those moments of unexpected change that great possibility exists. We shift. We transform. We go off the grid aesthetically, conceptually, or environmentally. In this conference we will concentrate on how we can seek those points of departure and together, go off the grid.”

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