Sociable Weaver

Sociable Weaver was commissioned in March 2020 during Lockdown, by Greenwich + Docklands International Festival (GDIF). The installation was part of the Festival’s Weaving Together programme, whose aim was to celebrate togetherness while socially distanced.

Sociable Weaver was a collaboration with Rosebud Centre for Girls, a Woolwich based support centre for young women. Over a perdiod of three months spanning Lockdown, I taught a group of young people aged 9 – 14 how to weave over a series of online workshops. They were all first-time weavers, and we wove using materials from around the home: plastic bags as yarn and food packaging as looms. Together we made 'solidarity squares' while apart, and co-created a nest-like space to host the solidarity squares; a site-specific installation for the opening weekend of GDIF installed in Dial Arch Square. The installation takes its name from "sociable weaver" birds who work together to build large community compound nests.

There was an intension for the group to teach visitors in on-site workshops how to weave, and for them to be able to add their own solidarity squares to the installation. However, due to covid restrictions during the festival, we instead created a video tutorial and audiences engaged participated in the work by weaving pieces from their own homes, and hanging them in their front garden or window, and sharing documentation online.

Working with Rosebud and GDIF was a real bright light during Lockdown.

Weaving Together, GDIF 2020

Sociable Weaver installation view, GDIF 2020