Museum Residencies

Hallie Ford Museum of Art Residency

Basketry with Artist Susan Marrant

This residency combines a docent led tour for schools groups of 30 or less of the basketry collection at the Hallie Ford Museum of Art (HFMA) at Willamette University in Salem, OR with a hands-on Basketry Program in the classroom with fiber artist Susan Marrant.

The traditional process of basketry is a story of native peoples and their knowledge of their environment. It requires time—to collect certain grasses at certain times of the year, to prepare them according to acknowledged standards, and, finally, to weave them using certain techniques into traditional forms for specific purposes.

While on the basketry section of the tour, the students will:

  • See baskets as more than mere containers. Within the context of the HFMA People and
    Places exhibit, students will sense the notion of beautifully creating an object of necessity with
    care and skillful ability. It was a skill that all women and some men learned and practiced; it
    was not usually the domain of a ‘special artist.’
  • Understand that the process of basket making is as important as the finished product. The
    artist will provide examples of some of the materials used and stress the need for knowledge
    of available materials and appropriate gathering and storage techniques. The notion of
    traditional shapes (form follows function—i.e. indented bases for berry baskets) and surface
    designs will be stressed.
  • Be able to recognize the different basketry techniques. The artist will provide ‘hands on’
    examples of coiling, twining, plaiting and weaving for students.

The Basketry Residency in the Classroom is suitable for grades 4-5 with four sessions per classroom. While in the classroom, the students will each make a woven basket using a pre-drilled wooden base and round reeds. Some dyed reeds and beads will be available to incorporate as design elements into baskets.The artist will also share contemporary examples of basketry and discuss how it differs from traditional basketry.

  • Cost: $180
  • Materials fee: $3 per student

Transportation is not included in this price. However, there are transportation grants available
to a limited number of participating schools.

This program must be scheduled 4 weeks in advance.

Thanks to a generous donation, a limited number of transportation stipends are available on a first
come, first-served basis to fund half of the cost of your bus trip to and from the Museum. Eligible
schools are responsible for the full payment to the transportation company and will submit a
reimbursement request/invoice for half the amount to the Hallie Ford Museum of Art. For more
information, please call the HFMA at 503-370-6855.

To schedule the SAA/HFMA Basketry Residency, contact Susan Powers, School Program Administrator, at 503-581-2228 x311 or