World of Threads Festival returns to Oakville for first time in five years

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Published October 10, 2023 at 10:55 am

threads fibre textile Oakville artworks artists arts festival
After having to cancel in 2020 and 2022 because of Covid, World of Threads Festival returns to Oakville for the first time since 2018. The art celebration is one of many Culture Day events happening this month. TOWN OF OAKVILLE PHOTOS

One of the leading international showcases of contemporary fibre and textile art is back in Oakville for the first time in five years.

The World of Threads Festival returns after having to cancel the festival in 2020 and 2020 due to the COVID pandemic.

Displaying over 426 artworks by 115 artists, the festival is part of this year’s Culture Days celebration and opened this past weekend at the Queen Elizabeth Park Community and Cultural Centre (QEPCCC).

The not-for-profit initiative with charitable status is organized and curated by Dawne Rudman and Gareth Bate.

“We believe that some of the most exciting and compelling artwork being made today is happening in the field of fibre arts,” Festival organizers.

Artists included in this year’s festival come from Canada, England, Finland, France, Hungary, India, Israel, Mexico, Netherlands, New Zealand, South Korea, Spain, Uruguay, USA, US Virgin Islands and Wales.

The World of Threads Festival is a little bit different this year with organizers saying that “we let the art guide us.” Festival curators Bate and Rudman don’t have predetermined curatorial ideas or impose concepts on the artists.

Each new festival is a blank slate,” said organizers. “Shows develop entirely out of the submissions we receive.”

Over 3,500 images and hundreds of submissions were looked through to develop these 2023 shows.

“We looked for connections and common themes,” said organizers. “Often artists are on the same wavelength during a particular period. Over time, the exhibition themes emerged and became clear to us. This method has been very successful and has resulted in compelling and unique exhibitions over many years.

“We are excited to finally share these new shows with you.

Rudman and Bate have build a comprehensive archive of 135 interviews with some of the biggest fibre artists in the world on their website.

“We have become a unique hub for fibre and textile art with a current following in 97 countries,” they said.

The festival runs from today (Oct. 10) to Sunday, Dec. 17. Admission is free and hours are Monday to Saturday, from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., and Sunday, from 12 p.m. to 5 p.m.

The opening reception is Saturday (Oct. 14), from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m.

For more on the World of Threads Festival, visit here or follow them on Instagram @worldofthreads and like their Facebook Page.

The QEPCCC is located at 2302 Bridge Rd.

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