Project Description

Weaving to Heal with Cynthia Alberto

Please note: This class will be held virtually using Zoom. Click HERE to learn more about online learning with HAM and contact Joan Gavornik with any questions or concerns.

In conjunction with the fall 2020 HAM exhibition From the Ground Up: Peters Valley School of Craft, join artist in residence Cynthia Alberto of the Weaving Hand to learn the basics of weaving on a handmade loom, a process that many find to be healing due to the comforting repetition and simplicity of the process. Students will learn how to build their own cardboard or picture frame loom, on which they will learn to create a simple woven tapestry. All levels are welcome; parent accompaniment is recommended for younger students.

This program is free to participants but pre-registration is required.


  • medium-large rectangular pieces of cardboard or picture frame, approx. 12”x16” or smaller
  • 1/2” to 1” nails, approx. 25. (for creating a loom from a picture frame).
  • scissors
  • yarn
  • plastic bags (if you do not have yarn)
  • fabric scraps or old clothing (if you do not have yarn)
  • Anything that feels important to you that you are comfortable repurposing into a tapestry (i.e. piece of clothing, cloth, journal entry, flowers, jewelry, hair, photos, etc.)
  • Clean branch or dowel, 12”

Students will need access to a computer, laptop, tablet or phone with a camera, microphone and internet access for using the Zoom meeting app.

This program was made possible in part by a grant from the New Jersey Council for the Humanities, a state partner of the National Endowment for the Humanities. Additional support for this program was provided by the Windgate Foundation, and the Marie and John Zimmermann Fund.

  • Ages 5 & up

  • Instructor: Cynthia Alberto

  • Time: 12:30 – 2:00 p.m.

  • Session 1: Sunday, October 25

  • Session 2: Saturday, November 21

  • Session 3: Sunday, December 13

  • Tuition: free to all attendees though registration is required

Register – Oct. 25
Register – Nov. 21
Register – Dec. 13

An artist, designer, and founder of the Brooklyn-based Weaving and Healing arts studio Weaving Hand, Cynthia Alberto seeks to bridge traditional and contemporary weaving techniques, drawing inspiration from ancient communities of Europe, Asia, Latin America, and Africa. Her artwork, performances, and public weaving projects honor traditional and artisanal techniques while also incorporating unconventional materials and a zero-waste philosophy. Throughout her artwork and teaching, Alberto continuously explores the many intersections between weaving and healing, as well as craft and sustainability.

Inspired by her studio practice and teaching, Cynthia continuously explores diverserelationships between weaving, healing, inclusive art, craft, and sustainability.  In 2014 at Weaving Hand, Cynthia developed “Weaving Together”:  a series of ongoing collaborative weaving events that focus on healing the community and create interpersonal relationships through the act of weaving together. Members of different communities are invited to bring recycled materials to weave alongside their neighbors. “Weaving Together” events were held at Museum of Arts and Design, Cooper Hewitt, Barnard College, Pratt Institute,  Earth Day Initiative, Pioneer WorksQueens MuseumAce Hotel, and Bldg 92 ­Brooklyn Navy Yard.

Cynthia is also a recipient of the Dan River Weaving Award (1998);  Peters Valley Craft Center Art Educator Scholarship (2008); The Pollock-Krasner Foundation Grant (2009); Museum of Arts and Design – Open Studio Artist Residency (2008 & 2018); and Ace Hotel Artist in Residence (2015 – 2016).  Since 2009, Cynthia has been a Resident Artist at League Artists Natural Design; a studio and gallery in Brooklyn, NY that features work by adult artists living with disabilities.

Cynthia was featured in the Cooper Hewitt Design Dictionary (2014), where she demonstrates the process of weaving.  She has conducted lectures and workshops at the Queens Museum of Art (NY), Tyler School of Art, Pratt Institute, Fashion Institute of Technology, Brooklyn Fashion and Design Accelerator (BFDA), Sheridan College  Textiles Department, and Kapisanan Philippine Centre for Arts and Culture.

Cynthia is a graduate of the Fashion Institute of Technology with a BFA in Textile Surface Design and exhibits her work worldwide.