Joke Robaard

  • HOW DOES IT WORK? (2009–2013) is a long term research project into the meaning and use of textile metaphors. Since 2002 politicians, city planners and journalists frequently describe the public sphere or society at large as a social fabric. They argue that this fabric is ripped apart and that flaws in weaving are ignored. Actions or policies are described as attempts to mend the torn cloth. The HDIW research pairs these phrases with philosophical, historical and practical knowledge of textile techniques. These juxtapositions illuminate all sorts of shifts in meaning, widening the scope of the discussion of what actually constitutes a social fabric. The research points to the gap between metaphor and material and to the accuracy that is needed when speaking in textile metaphors. The project resulted in photo- and video works that were shown a.o. at the Venice Biennale, Dutch Pavilion (2011), A.VE.NU.DE.JET.TE – Institut de Carton, Brussels (2015) and in various public lectures (workshops) and research publications.