Textile Society of America


Date of this Version



Textile Narratives & Conversions: Proceedings of the 10th Biennial Symposium of the Textile Society of America, October 11–14, Toronto, Ontario


Copyright 2006 by the author.


The Textile Society of America's 10th Biennial Symposium took place in Toronto, October 11- 14, 2006. The Textile Museum of Canada and Harbourfront Centre co-sponsored the event. A springboard for discussions across disciplines, the symposium offered in-depth explorations of specific topics related to textiles. The Program, which serves as the Table of Contents, includes presentations about textiles and trade, education, ritual practices, cultural transitions, cultural and gender issues, and contemporary art practices, offering an enticing and savoury array of narratives and conversations about textiles. The organized sessions, panels, and plenary programs are designed to raise questions that encourage our talking to one another across disciplines, through our common interests and concerns.

This 10th Biennial Symposium inaugurates two important ventures for TSA: Student/New Professional Scholarships and a new short course, Identifying Textiles: Techniques & Terminology. Five scholarship awards were announced to TSA members who are currently either students or recent graduates from a textile-related field, or have been in their first job in the textile field for less than three years. Recipients each selected one panel or session from the Symposium, or an exhibition held in conjunction with the Symposium, and prepared a review for publication in the TSA Spring Newsletter. The short course, taught by Desiré Koslin and Sandra Sardjono, was offered at the Textile Museum of Canada for twenty participants, providing an educational opportunity for professional development. Topics included cloth construction, dyeing, weave structure, and surface design techniques. A similar course will be offered at future symposia, each designed to provide a foundation for further participation in textile studies and to introduce tools for identification and understanding of terminology.

Textile Narratives + Conversations was hosted by two of Canada's most respected cultural entities, Harbourfront Centre and the Textile Museum of Canada. Harbourfront Centre, on Toronto's waterfront, is an innovative nonprofit cultural organization which creates events and activities of excellence that enliven, educate and entertain a diverse public. Since its inception, Harbourfront Centre has been introducing Toronto audiences to artists and art forms that would not normally be seen in commercial venues, exploring new and bold frontiers in the arts and creative expression. Its mission is to nurture the growth of new cultural expression, stimulate Canadian and international interchange and provide a dynamic, accessible environment for the public to experience the marvels of the creative imagination.