Friday, November 16, 2012

LCP IT Manager Nicole Scalessa at Knitting Symposium

Nicole Scalessa, Library Company IT Manager, needlework historian, and author attended the Knitting and Crochet Heritage Museum: Work in Progress Symposium last week.  Symposium Chair Karen Kendrick-Hands brought together experts in material culture, women’s history, digitization, museum studies, the fiber industry, and of course knitting and crochet on the University of Wisconsin-Madison campus. This created a perfect storm for exploring the feasibility of establishing an international center for knitting and crochet. Keynote speaker Susan Strawn kicked off the event with a wonderful presentation on the visual culture of knitting in America based on her book Knitting America: A Glorious Heritage from Warm Socks to High Art (Minneapolis:  Voyageur Press, 2007).

Over the course of two and half days of presentations, it became clear that with tactile arts such as knitting and crochet both a physical and a digital space are needed to make the impact desired by those most passionate on the subject. A strategic planning boot camp of sorts ensued and ultimately yielded a name and tagline for this venture:  The Center for Knit and Crochet: To Preserve and Promote Art, Craft, and Scholarship.

Ms. Scalessa was nominated to the Advisory Board created to help plan for the formation of this organization. It is her hope that the Center can provide the digital resource museums and libraries need to share their often hidden collections of knitting and crochet internationally.  The Library Company has an extensive collection of rare crochet and knitting patterns and instruction guides, accompanied by a treasure trove of supporting material in all areas of American history. 

Ms. Scalessa is the author of Historic Reflections in Crochet (Library Company, 2001) and several articles in serials, including Piece-Work, Piece-Work’s Crochet Traditions and Chain Link, and is a contributor to the historical introduction in Donna Kooler’s Encyclopedia of Sewing (Little Rock, Arkansas: Leisure Arts, 2009). Many of these works feature Library Company collections.

No comments:

Post a Comment

LCP News Menu