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The Textile Arts Council is proud to present a lecture by artist, professor, and author Deborah Valoma, longtime acquaintance of master basket maker Julia Parker (Coast Miwok/Kashaya Pomo). Nine years ago Valoma began recording her conversations with Parker, and from these emerged the recently published book Scrape the Willow until It Sings: The Words and Work of Basket Maker Julia Parker (Heyday).
Julia Parker was a student of the great basket weavers of the 20th century, including Lucy Telles (Yosemite Miwok/Paiute), Carrie Bethel (Paiute), Mabel McKay (Cache Creek Pomo), and Elsie Allen (Cloverdale Pomo). Over 50 years of diligent study and experimentation, she has emerged as one of the preeminent Native American basket makers of California. Distinguished elder of the Federated Indians of Graton Rancheria and a longtime resident of Yosemite Valley, Parker is a prolific artist, cultural demonstrator, teacher, and storyteller.
Deborah Valoma is a faculty member and chair of the textiles program at California College of the Arts, specializing in the cultural history of textiles as a global aesthetic practice. In addition to teaching a comprehensive series of graduate and undergraduate courses on textile history and theory, she has written articles including “Cloth and African Identity in Bahia, Brazil” (Berg Encyclopedia of World Dress and Fashion) and "The Impermanent Made Permanent: Textiles, Pattern, and the Migration of a Medium" (Fiberarts). In 2010, Valoma edited Textiles: Journal of Cloth and Culture and wrote the introductory essay, on the topic of dust.