Throughout the participatory research phase of Our Linen Stories, your curator was struck by the recurrence of conversations extolling the meditative benefits of weaving. Artists and designers and workshop attendees have all noted how much more calm and content they have felt after a period engaged in creative practice.
As a former General Practitioner, medical teacher and health services researcher, your curator has sought to link two fields of interest into a project stream called Making Well: where mindful design meets well-being for individuals and communities, first launched in 2014.
The evidence base has been growing in this area for more than twenty years and pioneers like Alan Delani of Karolinska Institute have linked University Schools of Medicine and Design throughout the world to forward this thinking. In Scotland, the burgeoning of cross-disciplinary Medical School modules linking Health Sciences and Humanities is further evidence of this important research area. Most recently, the extraordinary work of Professor Harry Burns linking agency in local communities with improved health and reduced health inequalities has encouraged your curator still further. In coming months we hope to explore how Design in its broadest sense can improve well-being: through workshops, user-based design projects and community activism.
Inspired by the weavers met during Our Linen Story Tours in Scotland, Journeys in Design is supporting the development of local ‘Wild Weaving’ workshops. With trained guides and enlisting weavers local to each of our partner venues, small local groups weave the weft of a pre-warped frame using materials found during a preceding walk outdoors, harnessing the hand-crafting and meditative benefits of sharing time with others through walking and weaving.
We are delighted to introduce our Inaugural Workshop Lead, Akshata Mokashi MA (Distinction) HWU Textile and Design. Akshata is one of four Research Allies currently working with Journeys in Design to help develop our key goals.
Image Courtesy of Helena Loermans