"BIRDS DEITY" is a collective of woven art which is activated and transformed into wearable art. It is inspired by a story of the sacred birds such as phoenix and peacock. Phoenix is a symbol of "rebirth" and "courage," as well known for the famous quote "Rise like a phoenix from the ashes." Peacock was believed to have an ability to eat poisons such as fear and suffering and ease negative energy, which symbolizes "acceptance" and "compassion."
The objective of my practice is to raise interest and build awareness of cultural sustainability. I utilize back-strap weaving, a rudimentary weaving technique in which a set of warp yarns are held in tension between the weaver's body and a stationary pole. The back-strap loom is simply constructed by several sticks and yarns. However, operating the loom itself is highly complex, and the weaving process requires extra time and care. In 2019 and 2020, I had the opportunity to learn and practice traditional weaving and natural dyeing techniques with local masters in Peru and Guatemala. In addition to the back-strap weaving, I incorporated a wrapping technique called Coiling inspired by one of the Basket making techniques of the Native Americans. By combining techniques from different cultures, I am proposing a contemporary hybrid craft not only to preserve these techniques but also to revive and honor them in a new way.
[ BIO ]
Terumi Saito is an Artist and Illustrator currently based in New York. Saito's work conveys the power of hand-making by practicing traditional techniques such as backstrap weaving and natural dyeing. Saito has a keen interest in building awareness of cultural sustainability and forming connections between traditional cultures and various audiences. She seeks inner peace through her creation and conveys a message related to Spirit and Life.