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North Country Shifu, lecture

  • University of Washington Odegaard Undergraduate Library 4060 George Washington Lane Northeast Seattle, WA 98195 USA (map)

Velma will discuss her journey into the gentle art of shifu: spinning and weaving paper thread. Shifu is made from fine handmade paper, traditionally kozo fiber, that is folded and cut into narrow continuous strips, spun into thread called kami-ito and woven into cloth. The technique can be adapted to applications bridging the textile, paper and book arts. To accompany her presentation, Velma will bring a plethora of samples, including artists’ books and textiles.

Velma Bolyard is a papermaker, fiber, and book artist living in New York’s North Country near the Adirondack Forest Preserve. Velma’s work explores a rich connection to the land in her adopted home, sourcing much of her resources directly from the land. Her work has taken her across the USA and to Australia to teach and exhibit, and her books are held in many collections. In addition artist’s books, Velma produces botanical and contact printed papers used by printers and bookbinders. She also specializes in making shifu, about which she has written for the Summer 2017 issue of Hand Papermaking magazine. Her work can be seen at