Portal:Textile arts

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The Textile arts Portal

Portrait illustrates the practical, decorative, and social aspects of the textile arts
The textile arts are those arts and crafts that use plant, animal, or synthetic fibers to construct practical or decorative objects. Textiles cover the human body to protect it from the elements and to send social cues to other people. Textiles are used to store, secure, and protect possessions, and to soften, insulate, and decorate living spaces and surfaces.

The word textile is from Latin texere which means "to weave", "to braid" or "to construct". The simplest textile art is felting, in which animal fibers are matted together using heat and moisture. Most textile arts begin with twisting or spinning and plying fibers to make yarn (called thread when it is very fine and rope when it is very heavy). Yarn can then be knotted, looped, braided, knitted or woven to make flexible fabric or cloth, and cloth can be used to make clothing and soft furnishings. All of these items – felt, yarn, fabric, and finished objects – are referred to as textiles.

Textiles have been a fundamental part of human life since the beginning of civilization. The history of textile arts is also the history of international trade. Tyrian purple dye was an important trade good in the ancient Mediterranean. The Silk Road brought Chinese silk to India, Africa, and Europe. Tastes for imported luxury fabrics led to sumptuary laws during the Middle Ages and Renaissance. The industrial revolution was a revolution of textiles technology: cotton gin, the spinning jenny, and the power loom mechanized production and led to the Luddite rebellion.

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Bayeux Tapestry
Credit: Image is public domain, copyright has expired.

The Bayeux Tapestry is a 50 cm by 70 m (20 in by 230 ft) long embroidered cloth which explains the events leading up to the 1066 Norman invasion of England as well as the events of the invasion itself. The Tapestry is annotated in Latin. It is presently exhibited in a special museum in Bayeux, Normandy, France.

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Bronwyn Bancroft, 2010
Bronwyn Bancroft (born 1958) is an Indigenous Australian artist, notable for being the first Australian fashion designer invited to show her work in Paris. Born in Tenterfield, New South Wales, and trained in Canberra and Sydney, Bancroft worked as a fashion designer, and is an artist, illustrator, and arts administrator.

In 1985, Bancroft established a shop called Designer Aboriginals, selling fabrics made by Indigenous artists including herself. She was a founding member of Boomalli Aboriginal Artists Co-operative. Art work by Bancroft is held by the National Gallery of Australia, the Art Gallery of New South Wales and the Art Gallery of Western Australia. She has provided art work for more than 20 children's books, including Stradbroke Dreaming by writer and activist Oodgeroo Noonuccal, and books by artist and writer Sally Morgan. She has received design commissions, including one for the exterior of a sports centre in Sydney.

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Portrait of Lily Yeats.

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Extent of Silk Road
The Silk Road, or Silk Route, is a series of trade and cultural transmission routes that were central to cultural interaction through regions of the Asian continent connecting East and West Asia by linking traders, merchants, pilgrims, monks, soldiers, nomads and urban dwellers from China to the Mediterranean Sea during various periods of time. The trade route was initiated around 114 BC by the Han Dynasty (114 BC), although earlier trade across the continents had already existed. Geographically, the Silk Road or Silk Route is an interconnected series of ancient trade routes connecting Chang'an (today's Xi'an) in China, with Asia Minor and the Mediterranean, extending over 8,000 km (5,000 miles) on land and sea. Trade on the Silk Road was a significant factor in the development of the great civilizations of China, Egypt, Mesopotamia, Persia, Indian subcontinent, and Rome, and helped to lay the foundations for the modern world. The first person who used the terms "Seidenstraße" and "Seidenstraßen" or "Silk Road(s)" and "Silk Route(s)", was the German geographer Ferdinand von Richthofen in 1877.

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Beecher-Stowe.jpg
Miss Ophelia sat down, and pulled out her knitting-work, and sat there grim with indignation. She knit and knit, but while she mused the fire burned; at last she broke out—"I tell you, Augustine, I can't get over things so, if you can. It's a perfect abomination for you to defend such a system,—that's my mind!"
"What now?" said St. Clare, looking up. "At it again, hey?"
"I say it's perfectly abominable for you to defend such a system!" said Miss Ophelia, with increasing warmth.
"I defend it, my dear lady? Who ever said I did defend it?" said St. Clare.
"Of course, you defend it,—you all do,—all you Southerners. What do you have slaves for, if you don't?"
"Are you such a sweet innocent as to suppose nobody in this world ever does what they don't think is right? Don't you, or didn't you ever, do anything that you did not think quite right?"
"If I do, I repent of it, I hope," said Miss Ophelia, rattling her needles with energy.
"So do I," said St. Clare, peeling his orange; "I'm repenting of it all the time."

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