Laura Womack is a weaver and dyer with professional experience in communications as well as years of volunteer leadership. She has just led a team of 50 volunteers in mounting the first ever online gallery of the 91 year old Phillips’ Mill Art Show in Bucks County, PA. In support of that initiative she launched a website redesign, a social media campaign with rapid growth in engagement, and a webinar series interviewing artists. The art show had a record opening weekend.
Before moving to Pennsylvania, Womack lived with her husband in Singapore. There she transitioned from a career as a public radio journalist. She had been a reporter at WAMU in Washington and freelancer for NPR. She became an arts volunteer, starting as a docent at the Asian Civilizations Museum. Her first gallery talk was on a pagi-sore sarong from Indonesia. She has been an avid textile enthusiast ever since. Womack served a term as Co-Chair of Docent Training for the Friends of the Museum (FOM). She and her team overhauled the training manual. She oversaw a six month program featuring lectures by university professors and independent scholars. Womack then became the FOM liaison to the museum director and curators, coordinating volunteer activities with the changing exhibitions.
Womack lives in the US now but she travels regularly in Asia, continuing her independent studies. She’s learned ikat production and back-tension weaving in Thailand, natural dyeing in Myanmar. When asked about why she travels for textiles, Womack says, “The medium imposes strict boundaries on the craftsperson and yet humans have invented limitless innovations. You can read human history in those innovations. That’s extraordinary! But for me textiles are a bridge to meeting people from other cultures. I have friends all over the world because of textiles.”