States of Emergenc(y)e, a textile arts, textile workshop and performance series advocating for opening borders and extending compassion and care to immigrants and refugees. Workshop/exhibition opening Saturday, 2/22 @Society for Domestic Museology.

Performance at Brooklyn waterfront (Manhattan border) wearing embroidery on indigo-dyed fabric and emergency blanket. Embroidery motif inspired by 1860 Mexican sampler

Performance wearing government-issued emergency blanket with immigrant advocacy messages at Brooklyn waterfront/Manhattan border with commentary about the ways we reject immigrants/”others” while appropriating their language, food, visual culture, music. Hand embroidery on fabric appliquéd onto emergency blanket.


Not a prayer shawl. Photograph by Linda Byrne. 2019. 24″x36″. Beading and embroidery on fabric; indigo dye and antique fabrics.
Embroidery, gardening, harvesting and extracting dye from indigo can feel ritualistic as they are slow, repetitive processes with centuries of history and cultural tradition. This piece questions (absence of) religious ritual, allegiance, loyalty and faith in a time of state-sponsored xenophobia and rising anti-Semitism and other hate crimes. The piece can be worn in a way similar to a Tallit or wall-hung, recalling the flags in my Ascent/Descent (Dissent): Flags for Peace and Unity series.


Indigo harvest, 9-29-18. Photograph by Lily Maslanka.

Thank you to Puffin Foundation West for funding Crowd-Seeded New York Textile Farm, now in its third year, which will be installed at GrowNYC’s Teaching Garden on Governors Island starting mid-June 2019.