Flax Exchange

Flax Exchange

Flax Exchange is a year-long community project. We are planting, harvesting, spinning, dyeing, designing, weaving, knitting, and crocheting flax; as well as upcycling and reinventing fabrics, making garments and accessories which will be displayed in a finale event with choreographed movement and live soundscape.

Working with residents in Tower Hamlets are engaging  groups in the craft of weaving and textile making through a series of workshops and events; sourcing and using local materials to create new products. Using a range of homegrown bast fibres and growing their own dye gardens, the groups will spin, dye, weave the fibres and design wearable accessories, clothes, and textile items which will culminate in an exhibition and performance event. 

About Flax Exchange

STAGE 1: Growing and harvesting - May 2023 - August 2023 

WHAT: preparing the ground, planting flax, tending the flax, harvesting and creative workshops 

WHERE: Stave Hill Ecological Park, Mudchute Farm, Craft Central, partner venues

STAGE 2: Gathering, exploring and Making - August 2023 - December 2023 

WHAT: workshops in spinning and dying flax and garment making

WHERE: Craft Central, partner venues

STAGE 3: Performing and sharing - January 2024-March 2024 

WHAT: creative workshops, performance making, rehearsals and sharing 

WHERE: Craft Central, partner venues

Lead Artist: Shane Waltener

Shane is an artist and maker. HIs practice draws inspiration from craft practices from ceramics to textiles and basketry weaving. The work is rooted in ideas of ecology and reuse. Working in participatory settings he aims for the making of objects, installations and performances to facilitate skill exchanges and with this, the exchange of the cultural and social histories that relate to craft. Shane is an associate lecturer in design at the University of the Arts London, and associate artist with Entelechy Arts, member of the Ambient Jam collective, co-founder of Common Agency Projects and co-author of Practical Basketry techniques (A&C Black). 

www.shanewaltener.com - @shanewaltener 


Stavehill Ecological Park / Mudchute park and Farm / St Margaret’s House / Poplar Union / Spotlight / University East London / University Arts London / Oitijjo / Stitches in Time


Arts Council England / East End Community Foundation

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Contact information

Project Manager adele.jeffs@craftcentral.org.uk

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