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  • Writer's picture Sarika Tatineni Doppalapudi

The Mother Project

I took a class called "Women's Text(lies)" with Professor Myisha Priest in the Spring of 2022. One of the first assignments we received in that class was to conduct an oral history with our mothers. I conducted my oral history with my mother, and we spoke about the maternal lineages that shape the ways in which both of us engage with creativity today. We spoke about my maternal great-grandmother's gardening practices, and my mother's photography. We also spoke extensively about my maternal grandmother's tatting. Tatting, also known as knotting, is a form of hand-made lace-making created with either a needle or shuttle. My grandmother's tatting is something that I had heard my mother talk about often, and I was inspired to teach myself how to tat after conducting the oral history. I wanted a way of engaging with my own maternal lineages, and confronting how those lineages shape my own art practice. I created a small textile booklet, and sewed tatted butterflies and flowers onto each page. The pages and lace were all hand-dyed using natural dyes I made. Below are photographs of different parts of my process, as well as a link to an essay where I write about Alice Walker, lace, academia, "living" arts, and cold remedies, among other things.



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