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International workshop on sustainability and craft innovation of fish leather



From March 22 - 27, an international workshop on sustainability and craft innovation of fish leather in Nordic higher education was held at the textile residency in Kvennaskólinn, the former women's college in Blönduós. 


The project was an intitiative of Elisa Palomino, fashion print pathway leader at Central Saint Martins - College of Art and Design in London and Katrín Káradóttir, director of fashion studies at the Icelandic Academy of Arts, and organized in collaboration with Gestastofa Sútarans - Atlantic Leather tannery in Sauðárkrokur, and Þekkingarsetur / the Icelandic Textile Center in Blönduós. 


The workshop was led by Elisa Palomino and attended by students from Central St. Martins, the Icelandic Academy of Arts in Reykjavík, the Royal Danish Academy of Arts in Copenhagen, the University of Boras in Sweden, and Aalto University in Helsinki, Finland. 


Students stayed at the textile residency in Kvennaskólinn and experimented with traditional methods of tanning, dyeing and sewing fish skin at the in-house dye studio under the guidance of fish leather experts Lotta Rahme (Sweden) and Joe Boon (UK). The workshop schedule also included a visit to Atlantic Leather, classes on sketchbook development, and a lecture on the restauration and conservation of fish skin artefacts given by Daria Cevoli, curator of the Asian collections at the Musée du quai Branly in Paris. 


The aim of this forward-looking project was to provide new sustainable practices in Nordic universities and encourage students, tutors and designers to produce innovative fish leather artefacts using traditional skills.