Located in Clayton, New York, The Handweaving Museum and Arts Center has two purposes: collecting and exhibiting textiles 20th century American handwoven textiles and serving as a local art center providing classes, studios and exhibits to area residents. The center houses over 1400 textiles, including extensive collections of important weavers such as Berta Frey, Mary Snyder, Lucille Landis and a 1600 volume textile library. Special exhibits can be seen in the center’s gallery. During my visit I was treated to an exhibit of the work on life of Berta Frey–expertly and thoughtfully curated by Wendy Cooper. The afternoon spent in the archives pouring over the weavings of Berta Frey and Mary Snyder was inspirational both in the sheer volume produced by these weavers, but the clever use of materials and weave structures by two weavers who made their livings through handweaving.
Reflection and thoughts: Our textile history is important and not enough attention is being given to it. This is a museum all weavers and spinners should consider visiting and supporting.
To learn more about how to support The Handweaving Museum and Art Center, visit their website at http://www.hm-ac.org/