Fuse + Stitch !

kiba cloth detail Medellin, web

Inspiration is everywhere – this is a section of a Kuba cloth on display in a history museum in Medellin, Colombia, celebrating the fusion of African culture in with the native pre-Colombian Indian culture which of course were brought in contact with each other by the third, overwhelming influence, the colonial Spanish.  The Slave Trade C16-C19 was the mechanism by which this came about.  Everywhere we went in Colombia there was a stong pride in diversity and colour from the mixing of the races.  Colour was everywhere, and not only of the people but rich vibrant colour surrounded everyone and everything.  As soon as I saw these triangles with large stitches, I thought ‘fuse and stitch’ !!   I wish I’d taken a clearer pic,  but as an aide memoire, it’s perfect.  You can learn more about the makers, origins, uses and designs of Kuba cloth here  and find masses of superb images here    I’m a fan, and would love a piece – however I don’t think  they have ever been cheap; and I expect that with the primary source being male craftsmen in the war-torn Democratic Republic of the Congo, that few of them currently have much time to spend on this ancient craft.

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