Nomadic Weaving with Ishraq Zraikat: Bringing Traditional Bedouin Weaving from Jordan to the Hudson Valley

Date(s) - Sun, Sep 25, 2022
11:00 am-6:00 pm

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Reher Center for Immigrant Culture and History


On Sunday, September 25th, Jordanian artist and weaver Ishraq Zraikat will perform “Nomadic Weaving,” a visual arts public performance that will introduce the people of Ulster County to Bedouin weaving. Join Ishraq at the Reher Center courtyard as she constructs her loom from scratch using locally found materials, warps it with wool yarn, and weaves a small textile from start to finish before a live audience.

“Nomadic Weaving” will begin at 11am and will last until 6pm. The performance will take place outdoors in the Reher Center courtyard at the intersection of Spring St and Broadway. Viewers are welcome to observe Ishraq at any point during the public performance.

About Bedouin Weaving
Bedouin weaving is an ancient shelter-building technology. A Bedouin home or tent is woven from goat’s hair and sheep’s wool using a simple flat floor loom made of found objects like tree branches and rocks. The Bedouin floor loom is a mobile and free-spirited tool that is easily set up and dismantled to accommodate the nomadic lifestyle of the Bedouins. They were constantly on the go and could not carry too much with them so they adapted their weaving tools and techniques accordingly. The performance is a celebration of the fluid nature of Bedouin Weaving: it can be done anywhere, anytime, and amongst other social activities. It is an homage to the ingenuity of the Bedouin people, especially the women, who found ways to weave intricate textiles with limited resources in an arid environment.

About the Artist
Ishraq is a Jordanian textile artist, weaver, and wool researcher. She attained an undergraduate degree in Architecture from Virginia Tech before pursuing her graduate study in Textile and Material Design from NABA-Milan. Her research-based practice bridges various design disciplines through a fundamental appreciation and craft of fiber/ textile media. Her work strives to unveil the sophistication of traditional handcraft – not through historicism – but as part of an affective economy which continues to be driven by everyday necessity, human innovation, and our eternal pursuit for beauty. An interdisciplinary practice built upon such critical reflections of process and material technology; and palimpsest of a journey through architecture, fashion and textile design. Ishraq specializes in sustainable practices of processing wool from animal to finished product, and is currently involved in textile related initiatives in the Hudson Valley where she maintains residence, and in her native Jordan. In 2018 she became a certified wool grader from the American Sheep Industry.