Keynote Speakers

Michel GARCIA (FR)
Botanist; Natural Dye Chemist; Founder, Assoc. Couleur Garance, Lauris
“Indigo and Tannins” 
Michel Garcia is a botanist, chemist, dyer, and naturalist. He is the founder of Couleur Garance (1998) in Lauris, France, and established Le Jardin Conservatoire de Plantes Tinctoriales (Botanical Garden of Dye Plants) in 2002 as a horticultural resource for chemists, natural dye researchers, and botanists. He has been instrumental in revitalizing the natural dye scene in France and abroad. Michel’s efforts have been pivotal to cultivating a greater understanding of natural dye history and teaching more sustainable adaptations for current practice.

Rta Kapur CHISHTI (IND)
Author, Researcher handloom saris
“Sari & Khadi: the fabric of freedom – from raw material to 3D draped garments”
Rta Kapur Chishti is the founder of Ananda Delhi Textile Developments Pvt. Ltd., a culmination of twenty years of textile research and development. Its mission encompasses the documentation and building of a data bank for textile materials, technology, and human conditions relating to weavers, dyers, printers, and painters with special reference to the handcrafted textile sector. Aside from producing exhibitions, Chishti also initiated the establishment of The Sari School in New Delhi (est. 2003). She collaborated with The Daksha Sheth Dance Company in producing “Sari,” a tribute to the process of turning by hand a raw material into a draped, unstitched, woven garment. Chishti is the author of “Saris: Tradition and Beyond” and is a curatorial coordinator for “Khadi, the fabric of freedom” exhibition (opening in New Delhi, 30 January 2002).

Jack Lenor LARSEN (USA)
Textile Designer; Author; Collector; Founder, LongHouse Reserve, NY 
“Interior Textile Furnishings”
Jack Lenor Larsen, internationally known textile designer, author, and collector, is one of the world’s foremost advocates of traditional and contemporary crafts. He founded the firm that bears his name in 1952. Over the past five decades, Larsen the company has grown steadily to become a dominant resource for signature fabrics. The “Larsen Look,” which began with Mr. Larsen’s own award-winning hand-woven fabrics of natural yarns in random repeats, has evolved to become synonymous with 20th century design at its pinnacle. Known as an innovator, Larsen has won many awards and is one of four Americans ever to be honored with an exhibition in the Palais du Louvre.

Makiko MINAGAWA (JPN)
Textile Director, Issey Miyake Design Studio; Creative Director, “HaaT” 
“Textile Fashion in Japan”
Makiko Minagawa was an independent designer before joining Miyake Design Studio in 1971, where she has worked ever since as its Textile Director. Since 2000, she has served as Creative Director of Haat, Issey Miyake. In 1989, “Texture,” a compilation of her work over a seventeen-year period, was published by Kodansha Publishing. She has been distinguished with numerous fashion and design awards and a solo exhibition in Japan.

Xiao-Ming TAO (HK)
Chair Professor of Textile Technology, Institute of Textiles and Clothing, The Hong Kong Polytechnic University
“Technology in Design: Smart Fiber, Textiles, and Clothing” 
Professor Xiao-Ming Tao is Chair Professor of Textile Technology at the Institute of Textiles and Clothing, The Hong Kong Polytechnic University. She is internationally known for her leading research on intelligent fibrous materials, nanotechnology, photonic fibres and fabrics, flexible electronic and photonic devices, yarn manufacturing and textile composites, and is recognised by ISI as one of the top 1% most cited materials scientists in the world. A great lover of scientific discovery, Prof. Tao is a prolific inventor of new technologies, including Nu-torque single spun yarn technology. Her photonic fabrics created by integrating science and arts have been invited to exhibit in Tokyo Museum of Future and Hong Kong Art Museum. Professor Tao is the current Editor-in-Chief of international journal “Textile Progress” and also serves on the Editorial Board of more than 10 leading academic journals. She is the immediate past World President and elected Fellow of the Textile Institute, an elected Fellow of American Society of Mechanical Engineering and Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts, Design and Commercial Applications, UK. In 2011, Prof. Tao was awarded an Honorary Fellowship of the Textile Institute, the highest individual award of the field.

Feng ZHAO (CHINA) 
Director, China National Silk Museum, Hangzhou;
Expert on Chinese ancient textiles 
“Textiles from Dunhuang and Silk Road”
Presented by Jian LIU, Researcher of archaeological textile dyes, China National Silk Museum
Dr. Feng Zhao is a world authority on ancient Chinese textiles. Dr. Zhao has published widely in his field of expertise and researched Silk Road textiles at major museums throughout the world, including the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Musee Guimet in Paris, and the Victoria & Albert and British Museums in London. Trained as a textile technician, Dr. Zhao has analyzed textiles dating from the Warring States period (475-221 BCE) to the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644) and has been responsible for several important exhibitions and catalogues that highlighted finds from the deserts of Western China through which the famed Silk Road passed. He is currently executive director of China National Silk Museum, Hangzhou; the director of Chinese Centre for Textile Identification and Conservation (CCTIC), Hangzhou; and Professor for History of Textiles and Costume at Donghua University, Shanghai.


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