STITCH is a weekly ongoing, community-based SEWING BEE to support The Spirit Tapestry Project.
Ramekon O’Arwisters’ exhibition, Sugar In Our Blood, is an autobiographical exploration of sexual stereotypes in the LGBTIQA and African-American communities. Folk-art traditions and techniques are physical stand-ins for race, sexuality, and spirituality in his work. Sugar In Our Blood is a collection of mixed-media installations including a collaborative, community-based art project that uses the folk-art tradition of rag-rug making to reference intertwined themes of domesticity, sexuality, and spirituality. Large rag-rug tapestries made from intimate apparel, nightgowns, and shirts are combine with church hats, family photographs, aprons, and other cultural icons. His community-based sculptures reference the American histories of gender, sexuality, and racial politics, creating a timely critique of our prevailing national anxieties.
A major component of Sugar In Our Blood: The Spirit of Black and Queer Identity in the Art of Ramekon O'Arwisters at the African American Art & Cultural Complex (AAACC), San Francisco, California in JUNE 2013–SEPTEMBER 2013 is The Spirit Tapestry Project. The Spirit Tapestry Project, a community-based project, comprises eight to ten large tapestries made from intimate apparel using the folk-art tradition of rag-rug making and crocheting.
The Spirit Tapestry Project will be on display at the de Young Museum, San Francisco, during my artist-in-residence in April 2012.
Creativity Makes Us Kin.
In my social-art practice, collaborative, community-based art projects are combined with folk-art traditions and techniques to foster and support a culture of collaboration and team-building in a relaxing, affirming, and meditative environment, in which participants can access their creativity. Crochet Jam provides a heightened state of relaxation that reduces stress and anxiety, promoting creative thinking and problem-solving. Art heals—it's a bridge that unites people and cultures.
The goal is to quickly and easily engage participants in a relaxed and creative state of being by transforming cloth strips into large
tapestries using the folk-art tradition of rag-rug making. Materials are provided and no attempt is made to direct the creativity outcome
of the project. Instruction in basic crocheting is provided.