With four months left before our thesis is due, tensions at the Masters Critical Fashion Practices were high! Add to the mix some pandemic anxiety, and you’re left with stressed out students ready to explode. What is the best way to deflate, settle the mind and relax a bit? Definitely a mindfulness and self-care workshop presented by Alya Hessy. She expertly read the room and, in the moment, curated and adjust the workshop to address our specific stresses. First up was yoga. The soothing movements stimulated and massaged the discomfort from our joints. Nervousness dissipated, and some stressed out students enjoyed moments of mental and physical calm. We languidly proceeded to the second part where we were shown the basics of wool spinning. I was apprehensive about getting satisfaction from performing repetitive actions, but then delighted in my own success and ‘expertise’ in transforming a bunch of fluff into a string. Wow! Maximum enjoyment factor! Alya spins a lot of her own wool and I wager that honed her calm and patient demeanor. She is a great and super supportive facilitator. If we could change anything it would be longer time in Alya’s workshop. More please!

On behalf of generation 30,
Lianca van der Merwe
MA Critical Fashion Practices at ArtEZ University of the Arts
March 2022

I make most of my work in my studio. I love the quiet concentration of the studio work, but I also love stepping out, making contact with people and sharing my knowledge and skills. A concrete question or a need stimulates my creativity, that’s why I love commissions!

I really enjoy:
● giving lectures and talks – e.g. a lecture on Anni Albers for two weaving clubs;
● teaching yoga – learn more about it on my YOGA site;
● teaching at art academies – e.g. Embodiment in Art workshop for AMFI;
● collaborating with other creatives – e.g. One, Two, Three;
● travelling and exploring new cultures and local handwork – e.g. Neither Nor Both;
● working on commissions – Translation

If you feel connected to what I am doing and would like to hire me or collaborate, drop me a line and we will take it from there.