Tapestry weaving is a very ancient craft. Pieces of weaving have been recorded as far back as the Coptic period. Small pieces of tapestry weaving were created as decorative inserts on plain cloth woven for clothing. texture sampling
During the Medieval period (C12th - C16th) these tapestry weaving became much larger wall hangings that were used to keep the interior of stone castles warm.
More recently Tapestry weaving became a less functional form of craft work. William Morris was known as one of the pioneers in creating decorative panels of tapestry weaving for the modern domestic interior.
There are few full production art houses currently in operation across the world.
In Australia we are lucky to have the Victorian Tapestry Workshop. The workshop was established through a government grant in 1976. Although tapestry weaving has been established as a major component of commissioned artwork for industry and public spaces, educational faculties that provide instruction are becoming very rare.
I am lucky at the moment to be studying this beautiful form of artistic expression through one of the foundation members of the VTW, Cresside Collette, and Joy Smith through the Studio Arts programme at RMIT, Melbourne.
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