Emma Welty - "Don't"
This work centers careful stewardship of textiles, both heirloom quality and every day clothing items. Keeping in mind notions of cultural heritage, matrilineal inheritance, muscle memory, and shared links between language and cloth, the works mine words and phrases from the care tags of bras. The words are isolated from their full context and rendered in colorful weaving and lace to allow them to float between literal handling instructions, and small poems about care and intimacy in the time of a pandemic.
The words are a prompt for viewers to consider their relationship to the care of the cloth items in their lives, as well as the ways that gently handling and mending garments can become acts of environmental justice that serve the liberation of exploited garment workers in the Global South.
Emma has created an oversized denim tassel with the woven word “don’t” on its waist made with silk yarn, cotton yarn, repurposed denim jeans, clothesline.
Artist: Emma Welty
Size: 17" x 5"
Age: Contemporary, 2021
Place of Origin: Woodbury, Connecticut
Type of Textile: Tapestry
Material: silk yarn, cotton yarn, repurposed denim jeans, clothesline.