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In celebration of Craft Year 2015 the Vancouver Guild of Fibre Art presents a conference looking to the land, re-using materials and adapting technologies to serve the innovative and creative spirit that working in textiles has always represented. In the lead up to the Textile Intersections: Sustainability and Technology Conference, we asked key note speaker Veronika Irvine some questions!

Tell us a little bit about your journey as an artist?

I have always been interested in creating objects from fibres and love to explore and master new techniques.  At around the age of 10 I learned how to tat, inspired by the doilies made by my grandmother.  From there I became interested in other forms of lacemaking such as Hardanger, crochet and bobbin lace.  I enjoyed practicing the craft, but for many years I followed existing patterns and shied away from creating my own designs.  In 2010 I started analysing bobbin lace from a mathematical perspective.  The process of deconstructing the art form gave me insight into the structure of lace and confidence to design my own pieces.

What emotional response do people have when they view your work or hold it in their hands?

Many people tell me about their negative or indifferent experiences with the maths they encountered in school.  When they see the delicate beauty in my lace work and hear how I have used math and computer science to create these designs, I often get the response that they wished they had been exposed to this kind of interdisciplinary connection when they were young.

What do you do when you are not creating?

My husband and I like to take multi-day biking and hiking trips to explore the west coast of North America and natural wonders around the world.  I also like to share my enthusiasm for math and computer science through outreach programs working with young women, First Nation’s youth and senior citizens.  When I can find the time, I play the harp, though not very well.

What are you most looking forward to at the conference?

I would like to engage in conversation with artists about the role of technology in the development of art and the role of art in the development of technology.  What technology looks like, how we use it and what role it plays in our lives is a reflection of who creates it.  It is my opinion that we need more interdisciplinary involvement in the development of the technology that is shaping our future.

You can find Veronika Irvine online here!

If you have any questions about the conference email

When:           September 26 and 27, 2015
Granville Island Hotel, Granville Island, Vancouver, BC

Click here for more information and to register to attend the Conference!