Chiaki O'Brien | Visual Arts

Chiaki is weaving.jpg
Chiaki is weaving.jpg

Chiaki O'Brien | Visual Arts

"I would definitely recommend Chiaki to others! Our students appreciated how 'hands on' this workshop/residency turned out to be. It was amazing to see how our students progressed throughout the week. What a perfect, tactile art for our students that incorporates social, cognitive, and independence skills as well!" -- Ms. Pelletier, Minnesota State Academy for the Blind

Originally from Japan, Chiaki brings SAORI Weaving to participants ranging from small children to older adults. This modern Japanese weaving style traveled along with her since she came to the United States in 2004. SAORI is a way of self-expression through weaving. Showing yourself in your piece tells the world, “I’m different from everyone!” Chiaki creates an environment in which the weavers can relax, explore, have fun, and be inspired by each other. SAORI allows you to explore, to have the freedom to choose colors and textures while creating, and much more! It is you expressing yourself on a loom, without worrying about anyone criticizing what you do! There are no textbooks or samples to copy. SAORI is the opportunity to enjoy the moment of weaving with colors and textures!

Book This Artist

SAORI is a huge part of Chiaki’s life, teaching out of school residencies, as well as workshops at the Minnesota Children’s Museum, senior citizens’ facilities, fiber-related festivals, and at the Minnesota Textile Center, among other venues. 

Learn more about Chiaki in her August 2018 Artist Spotlight Interview.

Sample Programs: Customizable To Site’s Needs


Joy of Exploration: SAORI Weaving

SAORI Weaving provides the opportunity of freedom. Freedom to choose colors and textures while creating, to explore and much more! Chiaki will provide SAORI looms for the students to work on and she will facilitate and encourage students as they develop skills and enjoy SAORI Weaving process. The aim of the workshop is for students to create one-of-a-kind piece of woven art!

Limited to 9 participants.



Bengala Soil Dyeing

In two hours, participants can dye a scarf or two, choosing from among 12 natural colors. This ancient dyeing process involves kneading, providing exercise to hands and fingers. Participants also enjoy the bright natural colors of Mother Earth coming from Bengala soil and create surprising designs on scarves they can keep or give as gifts.

Limited to 15 participants max. 10-12 ideal.