Craft Industry Alliance has reciprocal relationships with several other craft-related organizations and we’re proud to be able to offer our members discounted memberships to these other organizations. The American Tapestry Alliance is one of them and today ATA’s Executive Director, Mary Lane, is here to tell us more about the history of ATA and what it has to offer. Here’s Mary:


The American Tapestry Alliance (ATA) grew out of a friendship between Hal Painter and Jim Brown, who had a common interest in promoting contemporary, handwoven tapestry. In 1976 they traveled across the United States giving over 30 workshops in tapestry weaving as their contribution to the Bicentennial celebration. As a result of the enthusiasm they met along their way, they established the American Tapestry Alliance, whose goal was to form a network of weavers in order to promote an awareness and appreciation of contemporary tapestry.

Barbara Heller, “Tzimtzum – Transcendence,” 96″ x 48,” linen, wool, cotton, rayon, and silk. Photo: Ted Clark, Image This Photographics

ATA is a 501(3)(c) nonprofit organization supported by memberships, donations, grants and a broad base of volunteers. In addition to providing educational programming and exhibition opportunities for weavers, ATA also promotes contemporary tapestry to the general public. Currently, ATA has over 900 members from twenty-eight nations around the world. Membership is open to anyone interested in tapestry. We welcome weavers, curators, academics and architects, all of whom add valuable perspective to the work of the organization.

Membership in ATA connects you to a community of weavers around the world. Members receive:

  • Subscription to Tapestry Topics, ATA’s quarterly newsletter
  • Subscription to monthly ATA eNews
  • Listings in monthly ATA eKudos
  • Listings on ATA’s Tapestry Instructors webpage
  • Talk, ATA’s members-only email discussion list
  • Let’s Talk Tapestry, ATA’s members-only Facebook Group
  • Members-only content on the password protected section of the website
  • Reduced entry fees for ATA sponsored exhibitions
  • Reduced registration fees for ATA educational retreats, workshops and symposia
  • Member’s discounts on exhibition catalogs
  • Member’s discount on advertising

Monique Lehman, “Two Birds,” 60” x 60” x 3,” wool, cotton. Photo: Monique Lehman

ATA also has higher level memberships with additional benefits. You can read more about ATA membership, and join here: http://americantapestryalliance.org/membership/

ATA sponsors three physical exhibitions:

  • American Tapestry Biennial (in even years)
  • Small Tapestry International (in odd years)
  • Unjuried Small Format show (in even years)

ATA strives, in all of its exhibitions, to incorporate both traditional forms of weft faced tapestry weaving and innovations in the field. Our shows are open to anyone, anywhere in the world. Each show is accompanied by a full-color catalog. American Tapestry Biennial and Small Tapestry International include monetary awards.

ATA also sponsors a workshop every year and a Speakers Session in conjunction with HGA’s Convergence. Additional programming is held in conjunction with our shows.

ATA’s website is an encyclopedia of tapestry resources including:

Craft Industry Alliance members get a 10% discount on ATA Circle level membership if they’d like to join. Likewise, members of ATA receive a 10% discount on memership to CIA. Welcome!

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