Questions of Practice: Visual Artist Ann Hamilton on the Social Connotations of Cloth

In conjunction with her multi-part exhibition habitus at The Fabric Workshop and Museum, MacArthur Fellow and visual artist Ann Hamilton talked with us about what compels her to work with textiles. Hamilton references her own early experiences of making textile works by hand, as well as the prevalence of cloth in our day-to-day experiences. “There are very few times in our lives that we are not in some way touching cloth,” Hamilton says. “Cloth is the hand that is always surrounding us; it’s our constant companion.”

Visual artist Ann Hamilton on the social connotations of cloth. Filmed at Municipal Pier 9 on September 15, 2016.

habitus is on view, with major support from The Pew Center for Arts & Heritage, through January 8, 2017. Learn more on The Fabric Workshop and Museum’s website.>>

Ann Hamilton is internationally recognized for her large scale, multimedia installations, including the event of a thread, which was staged in 2012 at the Park Avenue Armory in New York. The recipient of a National Medal of Arts, MacArthur Fellowship, Guggenheim Memorial Fellowship, NEA Visual Arts Fellowship, and United States Artists Fellowship, Hamilton was chosen to represent the US at the 1991 São Paulo Biennial and the 1999 Venice Biennale. She is currently a Distinguished University Professor of Art at The Ohio State University.

Collaborators & Colleagues

Eric Tschanz is the president and CEO of Powell Gardens in Kingsville, Missouri.

Collaborators & Colleagues

Deborah Schwartz is president of the Brooklyn Historical Society, a nationally renowned urban history center founded in 1863. Most recently, she served as an LOI panelist in Exhibitions & Public Interpretation in 2014 and 2015.

Cliveden holds an opening reception for Mixing Memories – Sharing History, an exhibition of kitchen objects and recipes collected from members of the community.

The Penn Museum embarked on the re-installation of a longstanding display of African objects. The result was a 12-month prototyping exhibition and series of events, designed to elicit visitor feedback.

Grants & Grantees

The Painted Bride commissioned a new dance work by Caribbean-born choreographers Marianela Boán, Gabri Christa, and Tania Isaac.

The Philadelphia Museum of Art presents an extensive project centered on historic and contemporary African art that promoted greater understanding and appreciation of African culture as a dynamic and complex relationship between past and present, tradition and innovation.

Collaborators & Colleagues

Alma Ruiz is a curator at the Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles, where she has curated numerous exhibitions.

Prisons Today: Questions in the Age of Mass Incarceration is an interactive exhibition at Eastern State Penitentiary that sheds light on the current state of incarceration in America.

The Institute of Contemporary Art set about organizing the first posthumous survey on the art of Jason Rhoades, consulting with the artist’s colleagues and collectors.

Schimmel and Molesworth, widely celebrated curators, visited the Center to discuss curating and historiography with visual arts and exhibition professionals from the Philadelphia area.

Collaborators & Colleagues

Christopher Williams is a dancer, choreographer, and puppeteer who has crafted and performed choreographic works in New York City and abroad.

Barbara Kasten: Stages curator Alex Klein explains the significance of staging and props in Kasten’s work, in this catalogue excerpt.