Lecture by Maja Lund.


“Sea silk” is a textile material that originates from mussel filaments, also known as “byssus”, from the Mediterranean mussel Pinna nobilis. The filaments are processed into textile fibres by combing, spinning, knitting, or weaving threads into textile objects. There is scientific evidence of sea silk cultures existing since ancient times in the coastal areas of the Mediterranean Sea. Still, the material is related to many myths today because of different linguistic entanglements and the culture’s story of origin is still debated. The mussels are now an endangered species and it is illegal to harvest the fibres because of that also the culture and textile practises around the material are threatened.

This talk will discuss the research project I have conducted about sea silk over the past 3 years, including a recent fieldwork in Sardinia in Italy, where the last known surviving artisans of the sea silk culture live. The study’s central questions revolve around what we can learn from these textile materials, crafts and cultural practices, and what this knowledge can do concerning human participation, valuing and caring for nature. The study suggests that the artisans and their work with different methods, materials and approaches can be understood as actors in assemblages of vibrant matter and that these assemblages can influence how humans generally understand and become-with landscapes through their ecological collaborations. The overall idea of the sea silk studies is to weave together an academic, an artistic and an artisanal practice, through studying and working with materials, crafts and textile practices in different contexts.

CTR meetings and lectures Spring 2024

Every other Tuesday at CTR, we have administrative meetings running through the semester, followed by a scientific presentation, either by a CTR member or an invited scholar. We kindly invite everyone interested to join these lectures.

Lecture, ca. 14:00-14:45

The weekly lecture will start at 14:00 and will be followed by a free discussion amongst all participants. Please see the program below. You are more than welcome to join us in person at CTR, University of Copenhagen South  Campus, room 11B-1-05.

If dates are still open for lectures in the calendar, you are more than welcome to write to us with suggestions for speakers.

Zoom Link

You can join us via Zoom in case you are not able to attend the event in person. In that case, simply follow this link.

We expect everybody to turn on the camera and have your name as the “name tag”. It will be possible to join the discussion but until personally addressed, we ask all participants to be muted.

Meeting 15:00-16:00

The second hour, 15:00-16:00, is mainly reserved for CTR members, yet if anyone would like to join, they are welcome. The meeting consists of general administrative and CTR-related news and information as well as “News around the table”, where everyone gives a short update on their projects. Anyone participating in the meeting is expected to join this, also if you are not a member of CTR.