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On and Off the Loom: A Discussion of Kay Sekimachi and 20th Century Fiber Art

04/20/24 Saturday, 10 am PST

Lecture and Video with Melissa Leventon and Ellin Klor


Featuring a screening of the TAC video, Kay Sekimachi: Perspectives – Art, Legacy and Influence, part of the Bay Area Fiber Artists Archive.



Presented In-Person *and* via Zoom

Koret Auditorium, de Young museum, Golden Gate Park, San Francisco


In-Person Tickets: $5, sold at the door only \ free for TAC members


Virtual Tickets (Zoom): $5 Members of the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco and Students. $10 General Admission \ free for TAC members.


A recording will be available for two weeks following the talk.



On and Off the Loom: Kay Sekimachi and 20th Century Fiber Art with Melissa Leventon and Ellin Klor


Kay Sekimachi is esteemed as an innovator in contemporary fiber art. Sekimachi joined rigorous technique and improvisation to produce instantly recognizable, small-scale works of great beauty and simplicity in her pathbreaking three-dimensional art, including woven hangings and boxes. Her vision has had an impact on many outstanding artists. Sekimachi came of age at a boom time for fiber art, when many artists were experimenting with dimensional weaving both on and off the loom and were challenging old art world hierarchies in the process. In this talk, Melissa Leventon will discuss Sekimachi’s oeuvre within the wider context of fiber art in the 20th century.


Melissa Leventon, formerly Curator-in-Charge of Textiles at the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco, is principal at Curatrix Group, a museum consultancy and appraisal firm specializing in European and American textiles and fashion. As a curator, she has organized exhibitions on topics ranging from French couture to contemporary glass, Wearable Art to the Dead Sea Scrolls, and has worked with museums such as the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, The Textile Museum, the Chicago History Museum, and the Queen Sirikit Museum of Textiles in Bangkok. She has authored or co-authored six books and numerous essays. Outside museum work and appraising, Melissa teaches fashion history and theory at California College of the Arts in San Francisco, and is Chair of the Board of Trustees of the San Jose Museum of Quilts & Textiles.


Ellin Klor is a member of the Board of the Textile Arts Council, and the producer of the Bay Area Fiber Artists Archive videos. She holds a B.A. in History of Art from the University of California, Berkeley, and an MLS from the Simmons University School of Library and Information Science in Boston. For many years her work focused on family literacy. Ellin co-authored the book Serving Teen Parents: From Literacy to Life Skills.





Image Credits
1. Photo courtesy of the Fine Arts Museum of San Francisco. Credit: Signe Mayfield.
2. Photo courtesy of M. Lee Fatherree.

3. Photo courtesy of the Fine Arts Museum of San Francisco. Credit: Signe Mayfield.


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