With a background in history and nutrition, Meghan Shimek’s creative journey was a surprising one. Born and raised in Michigan, and currently based in Oakland, California, Shimek took to weaving in 2013 while visiting her family back at home.
“I took a scarf weaving class and was completely hooked,” she recalled in an interview with The Project for Women. “Ever since I have been taking as many weaving classes as I can and reading books and trying out different techniques.”
What began as a simple way to pass the time would soon blossom into her life’s work. Now, with little over 60k followers on Instagram, Shimek exhibits her work worldwide and teaches her learned techniques through weaving workshops.
Over the years, Shimek has become recognized for her massive woven wall hangings. Exploring the fibers’ organic movement, Shimek’s weaving style allows the fibers to fall into an indeterminate pattern that reveals the beauty and vulnerability of her materials. Amongst her acquired techniques are tapestry and Navajo weaving, rigid heddle, and floor loom weaving.
“I wasn’t an artist before I started weaving and honestly felt pretty intimidated to jump in and meet all these people who have been working in these fields for years,” she admits. But she shouldn’t have been intimidated. “The weaving community especially has been amazing,” says Shimek. “All these wonderful people sharing their work and explaining techniques, it really resonates with me.”