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About Sigrid * Bio * Resumé

Sigrid weaving at Anni Alber's CB Loom

SIGRID PIROCH is Director of her own Teaching Studio, ARTS.

Sigrid is a professional designer, teacher, weaver, juror, researcher, publisher whose love of fiber and love of working with people is reflected in her life style and work. Teaching, she feels, is an essential way of sharing which keeps our traditions alive and opens doors to new challenges in this new century. In addition to her own work and ARTS students, Sigrid is contracted often to teach for museums, craft schools, studios, conferences and guilds. Sigrid's schedule for exhibiting has become very busy and exciting since the jacquard loom has become a staple at ARTS.

EXHIBITS:  Sigrid's piece "Aztec Gold: Music of the Stars" was exhibited for three years in the US Embassy in Bangkok, Thailand. Her work was part of the "Arts and Embassies" exhibit. Her yardage of silk, sequins and 24K gold was juried into the prestigious Carnegie Exhibit at Convergence 2000 – only 40 pieces were accepted of 150 entries.  One commission for an architect's home incorporated 40,000 yards of hand-dyed wools from 10 natural dye pots. She has exhibited and juried regionally, nationally and internationally for Shows and Invitationals over many years.

Sigrid is committed to the preservation and documentation of historic textile traditions.

bullet Working with a rare book from 1827, Michael Weaver's Coverled Book, Sigrid has developed a textile study group of hundreds of weavers as well as quilters, embroiderers and other artists/crafters who are reproducing these patterns once again by both traditional and modern methods.
bullet Sigrid desktop-published a book in 1991, Design Challenges, one of a series on an Arts and Crafts handweaver, Elmer Wallace Hickman.
bullet Sigrid's popular new book was published in May 2004: "The Magic of Handweaving -- The Basics and Beyond" from Krause Publishers Inc., the second in a series on "Tradition in the Making".
bullet She has published over 60 articles in major textile magazines since 1985 and, in addition to her two books, has had her work shown in 8 books by other authors.
bullet Through the University of Pittsburgh Sigrid received three Fellowship Grants from the PA Council on the Arts and the PA Heritage Affairs Commission as "Master Weaver" for teaching Apprentices and researching Slovak textile structures, patterns and references in a variety of languages. She is dedicated to the documentation and preservation of PA folk life and historic subjects, working with institutions and museums both here in the US and in Slovakia. 
bullet She has alpha and beta tested textile design hardware and software since 1984, working closely with programmers in her field.

Full Resumé on request.  

Some of the "hats" which Sigrid wears, and has worn in recent years, include:

bullet 1995-Present    Founder/Director of ARTS, the Allegheny River Textile ARTS Studio "Work in the Fields!" -- Sigrid & Alpaca Friends
bullet 1986-1992        President, VP and Board Member of The Complex Weavers
bullet 1984-2005        Founder/Chair of Complex Weaver Study Groups
bullet 1984-1998        Founder/Chair of the Complex Weaves Swatch Exchange
bullet 1999-2005        Founder/Chair of the Complex Weavers Fabric Analysis Study Group
bullet 2000-2002        Mentor, Canadian Masters Program
bullet 1988-1994        PA Rep, Handweavers Guild of America
bullet 1992 &1998      Evaluator, HGA's TLCs / Teaching For Learning Programs
bullet 1995 & 2001     Evaluator, HGA’s LXs / Learning Exchanges
bullet 1990-1992        Consultant, Shuttle, Spindle and Dyepot
bullet 1980-1983        Founder/President, Northwest PA Spinners and Weavers Guild
bullet 1980-1985        Founder/Editor, NWPSW Guild Newsletter, The Hub
bullet 1992-1997        Rep product support in CompuServe's Fiber Crafts Forum for Schacht
bullet 1992-1996        Area Rep for Electric Quilt Company
bullet 1993-1996        Rep online daily for EQ
bullet 1993-1997        Teacher high school arts students for Erie Arts Connect Project

bullet Sigrid was awarded a Lifetime Appreciation Award from the Northwest PA Spinners and Weavers Guild which she founded in 1980. She was previously awarded the first Outstanding Service Award from the same guild.
bullet In recognition of Sigrid's commitment to the preservation of the heritage of PA,
the University of Pittsburgh nominated her solely for the PA Governor's Award
in 1992.
bullet In recognition of Sigrid's work in textile conservation she received Certificates of
from Mark Singel, Governor of PA, in award ceremonies at the state
capitol on three occasions.
bullet The Slovak Heritage Society made her an Honorary Member.
bullet She won an international award from Jet Print Photo in a photo contest in 2001 for a CorelDraw-modified digital macro-textile image. This 25 shaft silk handwoven textile photo features the words "Handwoven Cloth -- The Ultimate Experience."
bullet Sigrid is a Journeyman Weaver of the Weavers Guild of Boston.
bullet She received the Handweavers Guild of America's Judges' Choice Award in 1984.
bullet In the 1970's and 1980's Sigrid received over 60 ribbons from fairs and farm shows for handspun, natural-dyed and handwoven items.
bullet She received a Certificate of Merit from Interweave Press in 1985 + Awards at both State and National levels.

Sigrid has a Bachelor of Arts Degree from Marquette University in 1962 and an MSA from Western Reserve University in 1965.  She comes naturally by her love of designing, of fiber and of color as she comes from an visual and performing arts family, a long line of professional artists and musicians, writers and inventors. Her Father was a well-known Opera and Symphony Conductor and her Mother/ Grandparents were painters/ sculptors. The creative process expressed in color, texture, rhythm has been an integral part of her life since birth. She traces her ancestry on one side to weavers from Paisley, Scotland. On the other, her Swedish heritage blossoms in a love of pattern and color. She is married with 3 grown children and 5 grandchildren.

PHOTOS TOP TO BOTTOM: Sigrid weaving at Anni Alber's CB Loom, Sigrid with Alpaca Friends, Sigrid finishing "Aztec Gold: Music of the Stars", fabric woven of silk, sequins and embellished with 24K gold.


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