The Union is thrilled to have an opportunity to collaborate with New Craft Artists in Action member + Bemis resident, Samantha Fields on an Omaha edition of "Net Works"! 

Brought to participants via traveling workshops, pick up games and internet cataloguing, the NCAA is a craftivist collective that addresses public space, diversity, collaboration, feminism, and interdisciplinary learning through the "Net Works" project. The collective assembles hand­made basketball nets for abandoned hoops, usually via knit and crochet, to build proactive inclusive relationships between artists, athletes, and neighbors. Here the form and function of the “street” and the “domestic” collide in hand­-made tactical aesthetics that express dissidence and generate new approaches to public space. 

 Basketball has slowly evolved since 1891, when James Naismith posed a recycled peach basket as the first hoop for his students in Springfield, MA.Woven nets emerged several years later, introducing a new dimension for movement and audio-­kinetic satisfaction. Inspired by the many ways nets benefit the game, NCAA Net Works proceeds by a mapping process and a form of DIY slow production that utilize creative problem solving in under­maintained urban spaces. The project draws attention to the expressive potential of these spaces while challenging commercially driven professional athletic institutions.

Please join Samantha at The Union on Saturday, November 1st at 1:30pm for a tutorial on how to create nets which will be installed around our community on November 15th. She'll be on hand to help you get your net started and participants are welcome to spend the afternoon knitting and crocheting with Samantha + the Union staff.  

Refreshments and yarn will be provided -- we'll have some hooks and needles available, but you may want to bring your own so that you can continue your project at home. This event is free and open to the public, everyone is welcome, regardless of skill level or age.


Samantha grew up in Brockton just south of Boston; She continues to live and work in the Boston area. Her work has been deeply impacted by these roots, and is expressed through her choices of materials and content. She graduated from MFA program The School of the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston in 2005 and received her undergraduate degree from Massachusetts College of Art, in 1996 and now is adjunct faculty at Mass Art.

 Samantha is obsessive at her work, like an addiction.  She has claimed to be a sculptor pretending to be a painter pretending to be a lady of leisure pretending to be a sculptor. Sam's hands are always busy.  In the past few years she has strung or stitched well over 1,520,430 beads and sequins.  Samantha's insanity has not gone without recognition. This past year She received the Sally Yunis Memorial Award, at Fiber International, in Pittsburgh, and funding from the Puffin Foundation and St. Botolph Club Foundation to begin a new body of work impacted by her 2012 travels to England, in order to research tapestries and architectural ruins, which was supported by the SMFA traveling scholars fellowship.


The collective was born out of Boston, Massachusetts, longitudinally central between Springfield’s Basketball Hall of Fame and Lowell’s American Textile History Museum. Since its founding in 2010, the NCAA has taken Net Works to many places including Detroit, Pittsburgh, LA, Toronto, Flint, San Fransisco, San Antonio, Hungary, South Africa, and the Philippines.