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Unplying Machine - Ervins Apinis, Wood & Metal, Canberra, 1950 Object Reg. No: HT 25279

Unplying machine designed and made by Ervins Apinis in the Parkes Holding Centre in Canberra in 1950. Made from cans, scrap metal and wood, this machine was designed to be used with the countermarch loom. Ervins migrated to Australia with his wife Anna, son Eriks and Anna's father Ernest in 1950 after spending time in a Displaced Persons Camp, Memmingen, in Germany following World War Two. Ervins used the unplying machine to unply balls of wool to make weaving threads for Anna, as weaving materials were difficult to find in post-war Australia.

In Latvia, Ervins worked as a qualified road engineer. After arriving in Australia, he was employed as a railway labourer, eventually becoming a rail-bond welder. His wife Anna had studied weaving in Latvia and in Australia became one of the few suppliers of Latvian national costumes in the 1950s and 1960s, and exhibited her weaving nationally, at exhibitions and Latvian cultural festivals. Ervins was actively involved in helping Anna with her craft and designed many weaving devices used by her. She fulfilled her dream to keep her cultural traditions alive through her daughter Anita who continues to weave to this day.
Unplying machine made from wood and metal. It works on the principal of a hand driven fly wheel which has a handle which when turned, causes a cast metal device to rotate which facilitates the unravelling of the wool to separate into individual strands. Components include a wooden plank, wooden bobbins and specifically designed cast metal components. There is a leather thong which acts as a belt on the hand driven wheel. Additional components include four rectangular pieces of timber of similar size and a cast metal angled bar used to attach it to the side of the loom. There is an aluminium can riveted onto a piece of aluminium which is then screwed onto a metal support. This can holds a plastic bottle of 'Singer Oil'.
Acquisition Information:
Donation from Mrs Anita Apinis-Herman, 2010
Discipline: History
Dimensions: 430 mm (Height), 450 mm (Width), 700 mm (Length)

More information

Tagged with: inventions, handcrafts, woodworking, making do, latvian communities, latvian immigration, settlement, weaving
Themes this item is part of: Anna Apinis, Latvian Migrant & Weaver, 1950, Immigration & Artistic Practice Collection
Primary Classification: CULTURAL IDENTITY
Secondary Classification: Ethnicity - Creative Practice
Tertiary Classification: weaving
Maker: Mr Ervins Apinis, Canberra, Australian Capital Territory, Australia, 1950
User: Mrs Anna Apinis, Australia, 1950s-1980s


David Nash Posted on 20 Oct 2013 6:05 PM
"Parkes Holding Centre in Canberra": the Parkes Migrant Holding Centre was at Parkes NSW (not in the ACT).

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