The Fibers area introduces students to the rich and varied field of contemporary fibers and its multicultural and historical roots. Fibers students investigate the relationship amongst material, form, process and content through an exploration of both traditional and experimental approaches to fibers techniques. Students learn traditional fibers processes, such as weaving, surface design, structural processes and papermaking, as well as experimental and interdisciplinary approaches to these processes. The curriculum is designed to allow maximum flexibility so that students may pursue the breadth and/or depth of fibers and enroll in those courses that most closely match their individual artistic goals.
The Fibers area is housed in two connected studios. The weaving studio offers ten multi-harness floor looms, three table-top looms, one vertical tapestry loom, and one 24-harness computerized dobby loom. The surface design, construction and paper-making studio is equipped to support a range of fibers processes. Surface design equipment and supplies include: six 8' x 4' padded print tables and numerous smaller portable print surfaces, two Janome sewing machines, one industrial sewing machine, three gas burners, well-stocked dye kitchen, and excellent ventilation. For paper-making, the studio is equipped with a Hollander beater and moulds and deckles in a variety of sizes. Additional equipment includes: spinning wheels, hand and drum carders, washer and dryer, and many small appliances and tools. Advanced students are provided with semi-private work areas, and large communal work areas are available for use by all fibers students.