Janis Jefferies is Emeritus Professor of Visual Arts, Goldsmiths, University of London, UK.
She is an artist, writer and curator, Research Fellow at the Constance Howard Resource and Research Centre in Textiles which she established in 2002. She has edited numerous books and chapter contributions on textiles, technology, performance and practice research and was one of the founding editors of ‘Textile: The Journal of Cloth and Culture’ in 2002 and has devised several special issue for the Journal.
She is co-editor of the Handbook of Textile Culture (2016), wrote the introduction to From Tapestry to Fiber Art. The Lausanne Biennials 1962-1995. Fondation Toms Pauli Lausanne and Skira Editions Milan (2017), edited and wrote essays for TECHSTYLE Series 2.0: Ariadne’s Thread. Hong Kong: MILL6 Foundation (2017), A Reader TEXTYLE 2.0 FabPublic, Talking about Textiles, Community and Public Space CHAT/MILL6 Hong Kong (2018), and Philosophy of Weaving (as a practice / techne and/or as political metaphor). Athens: Nissos Publications (2017). She is currently working on the catalogue to accompany The Enchantment of Textiles research project with Professor Barbara Layne, Concordia University which documents 20 years of their collaborative, textile and technology based research. The exhibition will be shown at the ASM Expression Gallery. Art Science Museum, Singapore in 2019.
Forthcoming publications (2019) include, ‘Textile Modernism: Transcultural readings of Maryn Varbanov and abstract weaving from East to East, from Local to Global’, for the edited volume Textile Moderne/Textile Modernism, Boehlau publishers in German and English, Polish Ghosts for Central Museum of Textiles, Lodz, Poland,' 'From Lausanne to Hangzhou: the role and function of textile biennials', with Dr Lee Weinberg for a Companion to Textile Culture, Volume Editor: Jennifer Harris and 'Performing/Provoking' Transmissions: critical tactics for making and communicating research, MIT Press.
Jefferies is Chief Co-editor for the Bloomsbury Encyclopedia of World Textiles (10 volumes) with Dr Vivienne Richmond (Department of History, Goldsmiths) to be launched in 2024 and invited by Dr Charlie Gere and Dr Francesca Franco on ‘Art, Craft & Design technologies’ for the first volume of the three-volume Bloomsbury Encyclopedia of New Media Art, to be published in 2022. The volume, ‘New Media Art: History and Theory’, looks at the histories of new media art, and will be based on the notion that New Media Art is a highly complex phenomenon, and has multiple origins in various artistic and cultural developments.
Having previously held visiting professorships at Art Institute of Chicago, Universities of Wollongong, Newcastle and South Australia, Jefferies was the first international visual arts, Creative Thinking Fellow, University of Auckland (which examined the role of creativity in the arts and humanities).
Given Jefferies’ reputation in art textiles, she was invited to be the first international curator of the Hangzhou Fiber Biennial, China Academy of Arts, Zhejiang Art and National Silk Museums (2011-2013) and exhibited a body of photographic work in 2016. Pedagogical leadership is further exemplified by a series of Professorial Lectures in China since 2012 that have included China Academy of Art, Hangzhou ,CAFA, Beijing Academy of the Arts and Academy of Arts & Design, Tsingtua University, Beijing.
Since 2011, Jefferies has been an advisory board member of Aarhus University Faculty of the Arts, Denmark, since 2015 she has been consultant to CHAT, Centre for Heritage, Art and Textiles Foundation in Hong Kong and is a member of the international advisory board. In 2018 she was asked to be the international ambassador for both the Textile Society of America and the Textile Society, UK.