Michel will introduce a revolutionary method of extracting indigo pigment in the form of fresh paste from powdered dried leaves of Indigofera plants. This method can be used in your home studio without having access to a field of indigo plants at their time of harvest. Michel will demonstrate the advantage of this fresh dye paste, which can be used to expand your art practice. You will have step-by-step instructions as well as recordings from the class to review and guide your practice at home. Michel will provide a manual covering INDIGO pigment, botanically, chemically, and with historical background. In addition, he will explain how indigo pigment/dye can be extracted from fresh indigo plants such as Persicaria tinctoria* (Dyer’s Knotweed) and Isatis tinctoria (Woad).
Persicaria tinctoria*, previously Polygonum tinctoria is commonly, erroneously called Japanese indigo. It was already in use in the Western Zhou period (1045–771 BC) in China and was the most important blue dye in East Asia until the arrival of Indigofera from the south. It is uncertain when the plant reached the Japanese archipelago. There are other indigo plants found growing and being used for blue dye in Japan including Strobilanthes cusia in Okinawa.
The indigo workshop structure includes two Saturdays (3 hours each) on 14 and 21 August 2021 with a week in between to experiment and observe your own indigo extraction. Enjoy your own dye pigment in two ways – start a vat and dip fabric or fibers in an organic indigo dye; or use the fresh paste for painting. Students will receive Michel’s Indigo Manual #2, Students Prep & Info sheet, Q&A sheet, and access to the recordings for one year.
The workshop cost is $350. The workshop materials you will need are detailed in the Student’s Prep & Info Sheet. Additionally, 1kg of powdered dried Indigofera leaves, maximum of 2kg per student, can be purchased from shop.slowfiberstudios.com at a 33% discount with a CODE that will appear on your Eventzilla Registration Receipt.
Recordings from both sessions and all documents and PowerPoint presentations will be shared with the class for review and to accommodate students in different time zones. During the week between the two sessions, you will be given assignments and may use an online Google Form to ask questions, which will be answered and added to a Q&A document that will be shared with all students.
You will be invited to a PRIVATE FaceBook group “SFS Indigo & Shibori Workshop” to share images of your work and exchange comments.