What is the appropriate discourse of cloth? For something as old as it is, it has touched so many histories, so many politics, so many narratives personal and social. As a part of virtually every culture of humanity, the discourse of cloth and textile must be vast indeed. But to see ourselves in relation to such breadth can be baffling. We lose ourselves in the annals of so much history. Cloth, being so present to every moment of life, is attendant not only to the major events in the narrative arc between birth and death, but also the excruciatingly dull and banal—the almost imperceptible textures of the the everyday.
This project is a route to knowing ourselves and the lived in cloth that surrounds us. We are looking for working cloth, working rags, working shirts, working sheets. We will hunt down their conflicted production methods, their relations to our grandmother’s and grandfather’s hands. Mostly, we will try to look harder at what is typically so uneventful. In doing this, we hope to see cloth more clearly and more closely. What it may reveal may not be pretty, in fact it will undoubtedly be embarrassing at times. One fact of cloth is its mixed connotations and problematic reality. The other is its superb closeness to our lived experience, the poetics of that closeness. it is the potential of cloth that it offers such simoltenairty.
-Jovencio de la Paz