I blog about my life as an artist, what I'm creating and thinking about creating, what I'm writing, crafting, sewing, weaving...

Thursday, May 7, 2009

West African Textiles

So, I changed my mind (to which I'm totally entitled) about my thesis direction.  Instead of traditional Japanese textiles (which I still do LOVE) I'm moving toward West African Textiles.  Africa is definitely a continent, so to begin narrowing things down, I chose West African to begin and then I'll further refine my direction after doing some reading.  I associated a link with the title (above) to a website from the University of Florida's George A. Smathers Libraries Africana Collection to some beautiful textile designs.  I'm excited.  I'm going to intern this summer at the African American Museum of Philadelphia, and I am beyond elated! I'm excited about the opportunity to work with the Curator and Conservator (who will remain nameless because I did not ask permission to put their name on my blog- I respect people's privacy) and I know I will gain a wealth of knowledge. It will also give me much needed fuel in honing in on my thesis topic.  I hope to, by the end of the summer, have an annotated bibliography of about 30-35 resources to begin and then I'll begin more specific topic-related research after I feel comfy with the general info.  Twenty pages doesn't seem like much, but at the same time there is a lot riding on my thesis.  Graduate schools will consider my thesis topic as well as the quality of the thesis itself.  I'm not sure if they'll view the video of me defending it, but this is the beginning of the rest of my life as a future art historian, conservator, curator, scholar, etc.  I definitely think that after this first internship, I'll have a more concrete direction in terms of what I want to study for graduate school.  I'm still very strongly leaning toward textile conservation for my MA, but I'll have to take a two year break before graduate school to fulfill the science requirements- two years is a very long time.  Should I get a first MA in AH while also fulfilling the science requirements and immediately upon completing the first MA, move into the second for conservation? That sounds like a plan. After that I can take a much needed break before applying to a PhD program. Ah, life. So many goals, so little time! For now, I'll finish my finals for this semester, but I still need a plan (however fluid it may be) so I can prepare for the necessary steps. 

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