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Newsletter October 2009

Dear ALL

Dates to diarise:

  • February 2010 entries for Jabulisa 2010: KwaZulu Natal artists are asked to submit work. More on this later.
  • Mid May. Deadline for Website submission details to Helga.
  • 14 July - 4 August 2010 Fibreworks VI National members' exhibition at artb Belville, Cape. More on this later

  • Next meeting: Friday 4 December at 10 am.
    Venue: Odette's home for a Christmas lunch - 83 Jan Hofmeyr Rd, Westville


  • Jabulisa 2010

  • Jabulisa 2010 will be a broad spectrum celebration of contemporary visual creativity by KZN artists and crafters. Works in all styles and media may be entered for this event that is organized by the Natal Arts Trust.

    Artists and crafters are invited to begin preparation for selection that takes place in February 2010. A maximum of three works per artist may be submitted. Only works completed after 1 January 2007 will be considered.

    Further information is available at all KwaZulu-Natal art museums. The exhibition opens at the Tatham Art Gallery to coincide with the 2010 World Cup.

    KZN Fibreworks members should make every effort to submit work to this show. Please contact Kobie Venter at the Tatham Art Gallery for more information if necessary:

  • Fiberworks VI
  • Margie Garratt and Sheila Walwyn will coordinate this show. They will laise directly with Maxie Oosthuizen, the curator of the Belville gallery nearer the time. I suggested exhibiting the Major Minors III exhibition at the National exhibition as it has not been exhibited in South Africa and it was received so well in the USA. I will print Rosalie's feedback on the show and her tour to the USA in the December newsletter. We need to update our (visual) CV's for the file that accompanies our National show. Margie and Sheila will pester us for this later!

    Maxie Oosthuizen details 021 918 2083(f ) 021 918 2301 gallery

  • Vista exhibition at Artisan gallery
  • Sue Greenberg, a curator with a cool head and a warm heart, gave us a folio of all the media feedback which was extensive. Sue is very good at promoting the artists. 27 members out of a total membership of 42 submitted work and the following people sold work: Sue Akerman, Annette MacMaster, Dana Biddle, Sally Scott and Jeanette Gilks. Like Sue Winchester, of the Winchester gallery, she also favours framed work, but wants quality frames.

  • General
    Please let Helga have the names of people who you think should receive a complimentary newsletter and let Dana have information on any new and exciting websites that you have discovered.

  • New members
    The following people have become new Fibreworks members: Johannis Pienaar, Karen Wentworth, Liebet Shrand and Mariss Stevens. Welcome and congratulations!

  • AGM 2009 Plettenburg Bay
  • Members present: Linda Jones, Dana Biddle, Margie Garratt, Sally Scott, Odette Tolksdorf, Jeanette Gilks, Helga Beaumont, Kathy Harmer Fox, Sue Physick, Ingrid Piprek and Sheila Walwyn.

    Rosalie Dace, Jutta Faulds, Annette McMaster, Jenny Hearn, Margie Letts, Lynette Douglas, Carolyn Zelenka, Celia de Villiers, Sue Akerman

    Since previous AGM's have been held in Johannesburg, Natal Midlands and Durban it seemed fair and good to travel to the eastern-only-just-western Cape for the 2009 AGM. Although not so fair all the time considering the ferociously windy weather. At one point the South Easter measured 167mph at Linda's, up on Her High Hill! All the gals really took Plett by storm! Nothing woesie at all about a bunch of seriously driven 50 plusses… Thanks to both Margie and Linda who went all out to accommodate us all in their beautiful, spacious homes. You're darlings.

    Although getting to the AGM was expensive for some of us, I am pleased that an effort was made to travel to a different part of the country. The AGM in 2010 will be hosted in KZN and KZN members will be happy to put anyone up. Since the doll workshop hosted by Dana and Linda proved to be both highly successful and stimulating and gave the trip to Plett a focus after the AGM, it was decided that a special workshop/work-day would be set aside the day after the AGM in KZN next year. Working in any medium and in any way people deemed fit, members would be required to respond to some 'event' planned by AGM hosts! We were all excited by this idea and it would be great if all members at the AGM could set aside at least a day for this project. It's an opportunity for us all to work as a group, something we have never done before.

    We had a lively hat-wearing meeting. I forbade any casual reference to Mad Hatters! Before I get onto the important - and long - business of the Constitution, here is a quick report back:

  • Office bearers
  • Rosalie Dace is happy to chair the regional KZN meetings whilst she is in the country. If she is overseas at the time of any regional meeting, Odette Tolksdorf will stand in. Either Odette or Rosalie will chair the KZN AGM in 2010. Thanks, too Rosalie for your letter of appreciation. Much appreciated.

    Dana Biddle will take on writing the quarterly newsletter. We have set dates for the submission of articles, giving both you and Dana time to collect and collate your newsworthy articles. Here are the dates: end February for the March newsletter, end of June - July Newsletter, end September - October Newsletter, end November - December newsletter. I will conclude my stint as Chairman with the December 2009 newsletter and want to devote it to all your achievements. Please let me have it before the end of this month. An updated membership list will also be sent to you.

    Helga Beaumont, Sue Stevenson and Margaret Ruxton are happy to be the Secretary, Archivist and Treasurer respectively for 2010. Thanks! Please don't forget to send Sue Stevenson via snail mail any additional, visual information about your achievements so she can archive them.

  • Financial report:
  • Treasurer's Report 10th October, 2009

    My apologies for not being at the meeting.

    When I started this job I chose 28th February as year-end only because it is the general business date for year-end. We have now changed the year-end to coincide with the AGM, end of September. A comparison with last years balance is thus difficult because of the different time scale.

    The subscriptions cover bits from 3 years. A few subs outstanding for 2009 and some subs have been paid for 2010. My pleas for your names on the deposit slips have been heard - keep it up and thank you.

    This Balance sheet covers 2 exhibitions on - at Artspace in 2008 and this year's exhibition at Artisan. There are 2 website payments because of our year-end change. The photography cost is for the works Rosalie Dace took to America (Major Minors III). The petty cash is in arrears because the postage costs from the exhibition over- ran the cash in hand.

    We have a comfortable balance in the bank and look forward to a successful new year.

    Margaret Ruxton.
    If anyone would like to see the actual balance sheet please contact Margaret.

  • Website
  • Helga will continue to maintain the website. She talked about the hosting of it: we use a .com address hosted in the USA as it gives us an international flavour and the hosting of it is more reliable. It also gives us many more pages - currently we have about 1000 pages on our website. Helga will let us know how many hits we get a month, when work is sold off the website and about interesting comments or queries that are sent to our website. Thanks to Helga and Rod who maintain the website at no cost to Fibreworks. There is however a 15% commission charged if they sell work off the website. The deadline for updating the web pages, and for new members to get posted on the web is mid May. Thereafter the website will be updated for that year - it gets updated only once a year because of the amount of work involved.

  • Please look at this carefully and give it your full attention. Much of this information you are probably familiar with but the time has come for us to make our Oral Tradition a written one. Helga Beaumont, Margaret Ruxton and I worked on it extensively before the AGM when it was again scrutinized by all the members present. Thanks everyone for input. The Constitution embodies our old Document of Intent that has served us well over the last 10 years. This document will not completely fall away though. In the 2007 AGM we decided to send off this document together with Fabulous Fibre! to any interested parties so they could find out more about our organization. This was printed in the November 2007 newsletter.

    The Constitution is not yet cast in stone. Please let us have any constructive comments in writing as soon as possible. A final tweaking can be made at the 2010 AGM


  • Aims:
    • To promote textile/fibre art as a serious art form and to establish a group committed to this ideal.
    • To promote and maintain a standard of excellence of work within the group.
    • To hold a national biennial exhibition. This may form part of a national convention/AGM.
    • To hold an annual AGM / national convention when office bearers are elected.
    • To generate interaction, new challenges and critical input.
    • To hold regional retreats organized by individual members.
    • To circulate a quarterly newsletter.
    • To maintain the website
    • To appoint the Assessment supervisor. This person will oversee the assessment of prospective/new members' work.

      What members decide to do regionally to spread the word about the organization will be entirely up to them.

      Venue and date
      Quarterly meetings are arranged by the members according to their needs and wishes.

      a) Application for membership
      Any one is eligible to apply for membership if they are South African or have lived in South Africa for a minimum of 3 years. The criteria for membership are set out in the Guidelines: 'Procedure for Prospective Members'. It is also available on the website. Prospective members work is assessed at the AGM by members present. All members' votes are of equal value.

      b) Existing members:
      Membership is subject to payment of subs.

      c) Lapsed members:
      Once admitted to Fibreworks, resubmission of work for review will not be necessary.

      d) Complimentary members
      Complimentary members are affiliated to Fibreworks and promote the Fibreworks cause. They receive the quarterly newsletter and do not pay subs. They are not eligible to exhibit work unless invited to do so by Fibreworks.

      Office Bearers:
      Office bearers are elected by the members at the AGM.
      A chairman, secretary, treasurer, archivist and editor run Fibreworks.

      Subscriptions are annual and run from AGM to AGM.

        Annual General Meeting
      • The AGM is held during October of each year.
      • The quorum at the AGM shall not be less than 25% of the membership.
      • At the AGM the present membership will appoint the Assessment supervisor(s). These person(s) will oversee the assessment of prospective members' work. The supervisor reserves the right to appoint someone else from the membership if they are unable to attend the AGM. Presentation and assessment of prospective/new members' work by all members present will form part of the AGM. Refer to Assessment and Selection Guidelines.
      • Office bearers are elected by the members at the AGM.
      • There shall be at least 14 days notice of each AGM and the notice shall be conveyed in writing to all members. Such notice to state the time, place and date of the meeting.
      • Since the AGM is the only opportunity that important policy decisions are made, it is in the interest of every member that he/she attends.
      • Extra ordinary meetings can be called if necessary by a poll of 25% of the members. Voting by e-mail in the case of extra ordinary meetings is acceptable.
      • Any amendments to the Constitution can only be made by a 60% majority vote.


      a) National biennial exhibition:
      All members are encouraged to participate in the national members' exhibition. These shows may include invited/guest artists. Fibreworks reserves the right to vet the work of guest artists should they wish to exhibit with us. Costs will be discussed and negotiated by the quorum.

      Artists', Fibreworks coordinator/curator, gallery curator's and Fibreworks publicity officer's responsibilities are set out in Exhibition Guidelines.

      b) Regional exhibitions
      Regional shows may be held at the discretion of the regional members. Refer to the Exhibition Guidelines

      c) Travelling exhibitions
      The feasibility of these shows can be discussed at quarterly meeting or at the AGM. A quorum is necessary for such an exhibition to go ahead. Costs will be discussed and negotiated by the quorum.

      The treasurer must keep separate books of account and a separate bank account, and must provide a balance sheet at the AGM.

      Suspension of Activities:
      In the event of the Fibreworks group ceasing to meet or suspend its normal activities of operating as a group, the dispensing of capital accrued as a result of group activities must be decided upon and approved by a 51% majority vote of the Fibreworks members attending the upcoming AGM or a quorum of the group.


    The Constitution Guidelines form an important addition to the Constitution and can be reviewed from time to time, if need be. They Guidelines have been taken form various newsletters over the years that contained important information.

    The Guidelines cover information about the nature of fibre and how we wish to define it, membership submissions and assessment and exhibitions.

    These documents include:

    • Procedure for Prospective Members/submission requirements
    • Fabulous Fibres!
    • Procedure at Fibreworks Assessments and Selections
    • Responsibilities of Artists, Fibreworks coordinator/curator, gallery curator, and Fibreworks publicity officer.

    The first two documents were printed in the December newsletter 2007 and have not been printed out again. These two are available on the website. Please find the last document - responsibilities of Artists, Fibreworks coordinator/curator, gallery curator and Fibreworks publicity officer printed under Exhibition Guidelines at the end of this letter.


    A. Responsibilities of Artists, Fibreworks coordinator/curator, gallery curator and Fibreworks publicity officer
    Note that many of these responsibilities could overlap.

    a) Artists' Responsibilities:
    Submission of information by the due date. This includes:

  • Your updated CV and any personal press cuttings to the Archivist. Remember the Archivist can only archive what she has been given.
  • Your shortened, updated CV to Fibreworks exhibitions co-coordinator, if applicable. This will be placed in the Fibreworks file of exhibiting artists that accompanies any national show.
  • Your personal mission statement, if you have one
  • Completed Entry Form to the Fibreworks exhibitions coordinator/curator.
  • You are also responsible for submitting the actual work by the due date.

  • Please note that the insurance of the artwork during transportation is entirely your responsibility.

    Your work must be submitted as a 'Hang Ready'. This is defined as :

  • Professionally packed. This packaging could be used when the work is returned to you
  • Work signed and dated on the front and back
  • An appropriate hanging mechanism that works with no fuss
  • Clear instructions regarding the hanging mechanisms/display

  • NB if the work /paperwork is late, the Fibreworks coordinator/curator/ reserves the right to exclude it from the show.

    b) Fibreworks coordinator/curator responsibilities:

  • Liaising with Fibreworks treasurer and Fibreworks publicity officers, local and national.
  • Liaising with the gallery curator.
  • Signing of Contract of Agreement Form if there is one.
  • Submission of paperwork e.g. Artists' Participation and Insurance Forms to the gallery for their office use.
  • Submission of participating artists list to gallery for display in the gallery.
  • Submission of whole exhibition's mission statement if there is one as well as individual artists' mission statements for display in the gallery.
  • Supplying the Visitors Book if need be. Email addresses are NB. This book is an important contact list.
  • Supplying an updated Fibreworks File of participating artists to the gallery. This contains brief, colourful and up to date information on Fibreworks individuals and the group, including website information. Again, this file is only as good as the information it receives from the artists themselves.
  • Cost of returning unsold works to artists will be borne by Fibreworks within reason. The work will be sent by post office with a tracking number. Should this not suit the artist, a separate arrangement/agreement must be made with the curator.
  • Giving the name of the buyer to any artist who sells work - gallery curators need to be told before the exhibition that this is required for the artist's personal records.> c) Gallery curator's responsibilities: (The curator could be the Fibreworks coordinator).
  • Liaising with the Fibreworks coordinator. Signing of the Contract of Agreement if there is one.
  • Liaising with press and local Fibreworks publicity officer.
  • Hanging the art work and lighting the gallery appropriately.
  • Displaying the individual artists' mission statements next to their work.
  • Displaying overall exhibition's mission statement next to list of participating artists.
  • Displaying the Fibreworks File of members' work for the public.
  • Seeing to the paperwork regarding any sold work.
  • Depositing any monies into the Fibreworks account within three weeks of the exhibition knockdown.
  • Collating and passing on all advertising/critiques of the show to members.
  • Giving the name of the buyer to any artist who sells work - gallery curators need to be told before the exhibition that this is required for the artist's personal records.
  • d) Fibreworks publicity officer's responsibilities:
  • Submitting publicity information to magazines 3 months before the due date of the show.
  • Designing the email invitation or coordinating the designing of the email invitation.
  • Emailing the invite to everyone on the members list, the complimentary members list and everyone else in the local area about two weeks before the opening of the show.
  • Writing the national exhibition's overall rationale if there is one and sending it to the local press. You need to give them times and dates, together with some good images of peoples work. (400 kb is fine). Artists in their studio make good images too. Images do not have to be of the works on the show. Similar work is fine. If you are the publicity person, send your work. If you don't send images, the press is unlikely to respond.
  • Liaising with the national press such as the Mail and Guardian. Again you will need to send good images.
  • Liaising with the gallery curator after the show on its success and failures. Distinguish between fact and opinion.
  • Report back to the Fibreworks coordinator.

  • B Regional Exhibitions

    Regional shows are encouraged and give the individual, local participants greater status: one is part of a group of ten, perhaps, as opposed to a possible group of fifty. Regional shows may also be seen as less daunting than national shows. Regional shows promote independence and cohesion amongst members within the provinces and are good opportunities to spread the word about Fibreworks. If anything should emerge from a regional show that would benefit Fibreworks as a whole or be of particular interest to the group please report back to the newsletter editor.

    These shows are responsible for their own expenses i.e. hiring of venue, opening night expenses, advertising etc. However, should the show include a number of national members, Fibreworks will consider contributing to the overall costs. It is therefore in the interests of the regional organizers to encourage national member participation.

    Members' subs go towards covering the costs of national exhibitions and national travelling shows.

    C Travelling exhibitions:

    These shows will be decided by a quorum of the group and the costs of such an exhibition to be agreed upon by the quorum.

    Kind regards to everyone

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