Woven City

Collaborative Project with Ponzano Children Ponzano, Italy (this project is connected to Recursive Gardens)

Paper weaving was presented as a Kindergarten occupation at the first Kindergarten in 1840 and taught the fine motor skills that could lead to practical skills like weaving fabric. It’s occupational in another sense too- This process has something to teach about how to live and how to make.

With paper weaving, every action has a backside, and by creating one image, you create its reverse. There is always another way. These forms feel inherently sculptural. The process is easily traced.Can we repair damage from gridded plots, and understand place as one inevitably interwoven system? What would we learn if we followed everything these threads went under and over and wrapped around?

To learn about weaving, the children started by weaving by going under and over strips of ribbon mimicking the warp and weft of a loom. Next, they wove with A4 paper, and finally, they wove a city together. The plexiglass sculptures inspired by the garden boxes outside, have slits laser cut into them similar to the paper weavings completed earlier. Seeing the paper explode, they moved around and through the sculptural forms imagining depth of the ocean and forest root systems. In pairs, they worked diligently weaving the paper through the slits, speaking on either side of the sculpture. There are openings in the structures so the city can grow and change with new needs and inhabitants.

Woven City Booklet, 2023 by coco on Scribd