Red Tape Field Station
Participatory performance: weaving with linen on a custom portable loom
Presented as part of Portland Textile Month and made with support from Emma Duehr Mitchell and Shannon Welsh
all photographs of the performance by Laura Glazer
After setting up a portable, hand-built loom outside of the Portland State University Library, I began to weave a narrow linen band called “tape” and invited others to join. Tape is a woven material that takes many traditional forms around the world, and was used to tie materials and garments before other kinds of closures became common.
The Loom:This loom is hand-tensioned and inspired by an 18th century tabletop box-loom reproduction: a copy of one originally used by my German ancestors in colonized early America. Showing visitors how to physically maintain tension in the threads with their upper bodies emphasized how all kinds of tension—personal, global, material, and cultural—can be held in this single narrow band. Each person who wove on the loom signed their names upon departure.