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Alejandro de Ávila Blomberg is a textile scholar and curator at the Museo Textil de Oaxaca, Mexico. He is also a botanist and anthropologist, the Director of the Ethnobotanical Garden of Oaxaca, and an important advocate of the advancement of arts and culture in the city of Oaxaca.
Jim Bassler, weaver and Professor Emeritus in the Department of Design and Media Arts, UCLA, incorporates techniques from Navajo, pre-Columbian, Andean, and Mexican textile traditions into his ongoing artistic process.
For this conversation, Bassler will show a few images of his first impressions in Mexico, starting in 1967, concerning how the indigenous people expressed their talents. Creating objects provided not only a means for survival but an identity in terms of architecture, agriculture, and objects of utility. He will also speak about how his work and teaching in the U.S. has been influenced by the traditions of Oaxaca. De Ávila Blomberg will address the cultural scene in Mexico in the 1970s–when he met Jim and Veralee Bassler in Oaxaca. He will present his view of what a unique moment that was and how a wave of cultural change swept through the hinterland. This was the last chance to hear wise voices and behold sublime works of art that soon faded away. Both speakers are featured in the Craft in America: BORDERS episode.
Please join us for this conversation on December 17 at 2pm, which is part of the ongoing exhibition, Borders and Neighbors: Craft Connectivity Between the U.S. and Mexico exhibition at the El Pueblo de Los Angeles Historical Monument, Biscailuz Gallery, 125 Paseo De La Plaza, Los Angeles, CA 90012. Open Thursday – Sunday, 10 am to 3 pm.