“After 35 years of experimenting with textiles, what began as a fling with weaving grew into a lifelong commitment. Here am I, endlessly gathering things to feed my loom, while this evolving world seems constantly to elude its need for this stodgy, well-worn craft. I have found a changing meaning that began in an environmental lesson. Like weaving itself – ancient, prescribed, traditional, natural, restrictive, the medium must be for me: plastic, adaptable, utilitarian, connected, flexible, intimate. My creations must express freedom, testing limits, challenge thinking, innovation. and in the end, lovely to look at too.”
Akamine has worked experimentally in textiles since 1977 and is known for her innovative sculpture in fibers and wearable art made from industrial or recycled materials. Her work was included in books, Woman Artists of the American West, The Costume Maker’s Art, edited by Thom Boswell and published by Lark Books,
Estelle’s community work involves organizing artists at Hunter’s Point Naval Shipyard, presenting Spring and Christmas Open Studios, and co-founding WEAD, with Susan Steinman and Jo Hanson, Women’s Environmental Art Directory. Her greatest interest is in observing the new and unusual in San Francisco fashion, clothing and performance. She enjoys teaching workshops as a visiting artist, and has recently celebrated her 20th year teaching art in a public high school.
She continues to connect to people who value arts and crafts movements having come of artistic age in the 1970’s back to nature heyday, and is very pleased to see the current urban incarnation known as Etsy.