-A textile craft exchange project between Sweden and Japan, by SHOGO HIRATA and LISA JUNTUNEN ROOS

In this project we aim to find new ways of working with textile craft by combining two different craft cultures into one project. By taking inspiration from the Swedish weaving and pattern tradition and ”filter” this through a Japanese traditional weaving technique, we create an intertraditional fabric, a piece of fabric that doesn't belong in any of the cultures more or less and therefor can be interesting, traditional and exotic for both countries at the same time. Our aim is to create opportunities and a new platform for textile crafts and as a result we hope to reach out to as many people related to craft in both Sweden and Japan as possible. We want to highlight traditional crafts and put light on new possibilities to work with it. We see this project as the beginning of a long continuous collaboration between our two countries craft traditions.
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This project is supported by the following foundations and organisations:





A great and warm thank you to all of our supporters who make this project possible! We are so very grateful. 



I’m a textile artist based in Stockholm. I work mainly with weaving but have a wide interest in all textile craft techniques. I often take inspiration from craft traditions and patterns from Scandinavian textile history. Weaving is often considered as creating a new material that is later used to create something else. I however, rarely feel the urge to go further than the woven fabric itself. For me, what comes out of the loom can be considered a finished piece.

I am a textile artist, garment designer and graphic designer based in Gothenburg, Sweden.
My inspirations come from processes such as making pattern, sewing garment, printing, dyeing, weaving and techniques from totally different fields. My mission centers on creating unique designs and individual textures by hands. As a designer, I aim to create products by integrating advantages of handicraft in modern productions, share and hold spirit and value of handicraft.



DESIGN - We have taken inspiration from old weaving patterns common in Sweden and Scandinavia such as MUNKABÄLTE DALDRÄLL HALVDRÄLL RÖLAKAN ROSENGÅNG DUKAGÅNG and KRABBASNÅR. Our idea was that the final pattern still would have a strong connection to the source of inspiration but more abstracted and free from the rules that come with certain weaving techniques. 

TECHNIQUE - The technique the fabric is made in is called KASURI, a more common name for it is IKAT. For a person familiar with weaving it can be explained as a tabby or plain weave with pattern made from dyeing the warp and weft in a certain way. Kasuri is a very old technique common in many parts of east Asia but not so common in the rest of the world. As you can imagine when looking at a kasuri fabric the level of craft skills needed to make the pattern so accurate and detailed is very high. The specific kind that we are working with is KURUME KASURI from the Kurume region in south of Japan. In this area kasuri is traditionally woven in cotton while in other areas hemp or silk has been more commonly used. 

COLLABORATIONS - One very big and important part of the project is the exchange of craft skills and craft culture and we see this as the foundation of the project it self. Therefore this project also includes a great deal of collaborations. To start with its the collaboration between Shogo and Lisa as two individual textile artists. Then we have SHIMOGAWA ORIMONO who is our main partner and also the producer of the fabric. Kyozo Shimogawa is the third generation weaving master of the small weaving mill in Kurume. 2015 the weaving mill received a grant from the Japanese government for the very important job of keeping a piece of culture and craft skill alive and in good condition for such a long time.
Se our other craft friends here! 

RESULT / AIM / BACKGROUND - Our aim is to spread knowledge and ideas about textile craft in two different cultures and countries. Our way to do that is to weave a fabric out of ingredients from this different places. The idea to weave a fabric came when we first found out about Shimogawa's weaving mill, since we both are textile artist we find it very interesting and challenging to work together with an old weaving mill and experts in a specific technique that none of us worked with before. To weave a piece of fabric is also very symbolic and we find it a good way to put skills, traditions, ideas and history into one object.
The purpose with the finished fabric is still a growing idea, the fabric is not made only as an object of design for selling. Our idea is to exhibit the fabric as an example of exchanging craft culture. We will also continue to work with the fabric just as a material in our ordinary practice.