In collaboration with the New York-based fabric company Pollack, we are delighted to introduce Undaunted, a fabric collection inspired by a select group of textiles from the Museum of International Folk Art.
Pollack is known for its creative and artistic approach to design, for its sumptuous fabric choices, and for seeking out sources of inspiration well off the beaten path. That Pollack chose to explore our world-class ethnographic textile collection for inspiration was an honor and a thrill.
With over 30,000 hand-made textiles from over 100 countries and six continents, there was no lack of material to share with this talented group of designers, but, as with all successful creative endeavors, we needed to establish a point of view. We chose to direct the Pollack team to textiles that Museum of International Folk Art founder, Florence Dibell Bartlett, collected – specifically those featuring hand-stitching and hand weaving.
Miss Bartlett, as she was known was no ordinary collector. At the turn of 20th century this brave woman traveled alone to the Middle East and to Europe collecting the finest examples of each county’s traditional craft. She loved the material she so thoughtfully assembled, but more importantly she appreciated the artisans who created it. Over the course of her extensive travels, Miss Bartlett realized it was through artisans that a culture communicates its values and aesthetics. This realization informed her decision to establish the Museum and continues to define its mission today. She believed that by creating an environment where visitors could experience the world through craft made by its artisans, our common humanity would be revealed. As she, herself said, “the hand of the craftsman unites us all.”
Given such, the Pollack collection features eleven designs based on textiles from China, Hungary, Syria, Burma, Turkey and Guatemala. While inspiration for the collection came from such a diverse group of countries, the textiles all shared a grid-like geometry and were either hand stitched or woven. Employing a fresh eye, great skill and twenty-first century technology, the Pollack team transformed the original textiles into distinctly modern designs.
You can see the collection on the Pollack website.