Textiles anchor us to cultural memories and help shape new identities. This project is rooted in the knowledge that Santa Clara county is the most ethnically diverse county in Northern California. Cultural exchanges and creative cultural blending occurs on a daily basis on many different levels.
By examining cultures and histories in unique digital fabrics, I hope to invite fresh reflections on who we are as a community. These textiles will honor the experiences of ethnic groups who shaped the Valley's agricultural past and will also celebrate the blending of ethnic groups today.The formation of this site was inspired by conversations with The San Jose Museum of Quilts and Textiles
in fall of 2009 regarding Hawaiian print fabrics and the cultural blending and identity found in Aloha Wear. In the past, I have explored the blending of Hawaii plantation cultures through mixed media works of wire, fabric, food wrappers and discards. Exploring textile design is an exciting new direction for me. I am grateful for an opportunity to collaborate with the San Jose Museum of Quilts and Textiles and designer Colleen Quen on fusionwear sv
, a NEA grant funded project (through The ZERO1 Art and Technology Network Consortium
),which explores the public's views on Silicon Valley's visual identity. What I learn in regards to public art outreach on fusionwear sv
will greatly inform my research on this site of cultural textiles in the landscape of Santa Clara County, past and present.
I have started a few category labels under the "About Project" . I am sure that I will be adding more ethnic categories to the list as I go, although my focus will be on Asian immigrants. I will be photographing textiles throughout Santa Clara County and documenting them here and on Flickr. Initial investigation into this digital textile concept can be found on my personal artist blog, Okada Design.
At the top of this page is a slide show is my Flickr documentation of textiles of Santa Clara, my textile sketch studies (and even some shoes I have designed).