Great Basin Basketmakers show their stuff at library Tahoe
Tribune September 22, 2006
An exhibit of baskets created by members of the Great Basin Basketmakers
will be on display through Sept. 30 at the South Lake Tahoe Branch
Library, 1000 Rufus Allen Blvd. The "Baskets Now" exhibit may be viewed
in the lobby of the library from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Tuesday and Wednesday
and 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Thursday, Friday and Saturday.
Reno has been the home of Great Basin
Basketmakers for the past 20 years. It is an active group of 200
members, who meet as often as three times a month to make baskets,
exchange information, and enjoy lectures from other experts in the
field. The group meets the first Thursday of each month for business and
a short program or presentation. The third Thursdays are set aside for
workshops, where members teach techniques or styles they have learned
There is also a third Saturday workshop so
working people can attend, although everyone is welcome. Three visiting
instructors are brought in each year to teach special skills and styles.
In addition, a member hosts a monthly "weave-in" at her home, where
members can come together for a potluck and give or get help with a
"We are a hands-on organization. Our main
purpose is to make baskets and to learn everything possible about the
traditions and techniques of basketry and to pass that knowledge along
to others," said Eileen Brilliant.
"In our effort to educate the greater
community, we exhibit several times a year in galleries and public
institutions and frequently demonstrate at parks and public gatherings.
We will give workshops anytime we are invited."
Brilliant, a 17-year resident of South Lake
Tahoe, has been a member of Great Basin Basketweavers for eight years.
She is the coordinator of special workshops and a member of the board of
"Weaving is a very peaceful activity for
me, and I especially enjoy using natural materials that I have grown in
my yard or gathered by the side of the road. With great wonderment I can
twist these and twine them into a vessel of great beauty and
practicality," Brilliant said.
The Great Basin Basketmakers conducted
their first exhibit this year from May 7 to Aug. 11 at the Nevada State
Museum in Carson City. When it was assembled, the variety of techniques
and styles was astonishing. They brought in Jackie Abrams, an
internationally known basket maker from Vermont, for a three-day
workshop. During that time they hosted two weaving demonstrations as
well as two basket making workshops featuring regional materials.
Great Basin Basketmakers produces a monthly
newsletter that keeps its members in touch with each other and what is
going on in the guild. "Weaving Naturally in the Great Basin," a book
about the variety of natural materials available in our area and how to
use them, was recently published and is carried by Neighbors Bookstore,
where there will be a booksigning and weaving demonstration at 2 p.m.
"This is an exciting time to be involved in
basketry when the art is exploding into myriad different shapes and
styles using a diversity of materials. Since Lake Tahoe is part of the
Great Basin we wanted to bring this exhibit to our local library for
your interest and enjoyment of the very now art of basketry," Brilliant
For information about membership or classes call Brilliant at (530)
Grant / Tahoe Daily Tribune/ Eileen Brilliant, a member of the Great
Basin Basketmakers, arranges a basket display in the showcase at the
South Lake Tahoe Branch Library. The baskets may be viewed throughout
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