Tejer el cosmos andino
Tejer el cosmos andino
I discovered Herero women in Pinterest thanks to the amazing photgraphic work made by Jim Naughten in 2012.
An amazing work featured globally by several media.
For someone like me who loves patchwork and is so interested in women´s heritage and identity, you can imagine how impressed I was, and am still, by the strength and power these dresses and their models communicate.
Today, Refinery 29 shared an amazing short video clip Herero´s Women Dresses and the struggle they confront to make the genocide (90% of the community killed) committed againts this people around 100 years ago. The media was written by Annie Georgia Greenberg with Connie Wang and published on 19 February 2018.
If you wish to know more, read Hildi Hendrickson´s paper (1994) The ‘Long’ Dress and the Construction Of Herero Identities in Southern Africa
Hendrickson, Hildi. (1994). The ‘Long’ Dress and the Construction Of Herero Identities in Southern Africa. African Studies. 53. 25-54. 10.1080/00020189408707800.
This paper investigates the uses and meanings of the ‘long’ dress among Ovaherero in Namibia and Botswana. Long dress design, construction, and historical development are detailed, and the role of other Africans in the nineteenth‐century adoption of the long dress is highlighted. The dress is found to mark women’s transition to marriage and motherhood and eloquently to symbolise the responsibilities of adulthood and women’s acquiescence to them. While physically constraining, and laborious to construct and maintain, the dress celebrates women as engenderers of highly‐valued, immutable social relationships. In it, women represent Herero society, ‘traditionalism’, and history within a wider, plural socio‐political world.
Amazingly, inheritance in Herero of Namibia and Botswana s passed through the mother’s clan, while residence, religion, and authority are taken from the father’s line (Source).
To know more about genocides, you can always read recently published book: Women and Genocide: Survivors, Victims, Perpetrators by
When a woman meets a group of women, all of them creative, only good things can result from this experience.
It´s the case of the photographer Margaret Courtney-Clarke and her photo documentary about the art of Ndebele women.
Based in West Africa, these women use vernacular art to enhance traditional architecture by painting them by hand using linear elements and “traditional design concepts borrowed from their ancestors“.
For Margaret Courtney-Clarke, the objective of African Canva work is:
My objective in this work is to document an extraordinary art form – vernacular art and architecture in West Africa – that is not transportable and therefore not seen in museums around the world. It is an attempt to capture the unseen Africa, a glimpse into the homes and into the spirit of very proud and dignified peoples. In much the same way as I photographed the art of Ndebele women, I have drawn on my personal affinity for the art itself, for methods, design and form, rather than the socio-anthropological or political realities of a people or continent in dilemma. These images portray a unique tradition of Africa, a celebration of an indigenous rural culture in which the women are the artists and the home her canvas. Margaret Courtney-Clarke, 1990
Found in moowon an amazing article about textile collage prepared by Chinese women living in the countryside.
The testimony about this making shared in the article is amazing.
“When I was a kid, my mother was making collages. She always kept aside the cloths she found. When the time came to make it, she first sorted all the cloth on a paper to the right and left to see if the colors were in harmony, then she began to glue them when she was satisfied with the colors. And that’s how a work of art was born. When the weather was nice, the women of the village gathered at the entrance of a house to work together while chatting. And the collage became a real competition between the women. The one who made the most beautiful collage was like a champion who would have won a grand prize for sport.” (San Paolo, Brazil in 2002, Xin Yang, retired director of the Museum of the Forbidden City)