Samorn Sanixay combines working as a designer in a Laos weaving workshop with her role as ‘big sister’ in support of Australian women refugees.
As a craft, batik seems quintessentially Indonesian. After a dispute with Malaysia about its origin, UNESCO in 2009 officially recognised batik as part of Indonesia’s Intangible Cultural Heritage. To celebrate, President Yudhoyono declared 2 October to be batik day, and called on all Indonesians to wear their national costume with pride every Friday. This proved … Continue reading Batik design partnerships in Indonesia
The recent ‘Through Indian Eyes’ hypothetical forum at the Powerhouse Museum reveal some surprising common ground between traditional craft in India and modern life in Australia. An Indian comes to Australia to revive a craft skill that had been outmoded by technological change… Wait a minute, shouldn’t it be the other way around? The ‘Through … Continue reading When an Indian designer comes to Australia…
Sandra Bowkett will be talking at the Gold Coast Gallery on Saturday 25 August about her experiences as an Australian potter working in India. She’ll be preceded by Kevin Murray reflecting on the growing relational nature of craft practice, particularly in ceramics. He will explore the idea of clay as a lingua franca between difficult … Continue reading The clay bridge between Australia and India
The Harris Tweed label was tremendously successful in promoting textile crafts in the Scottish islands. There are parallel moves today in the use of geographical indications. But such labels do not include the names of those who wove the cloth. When would this be appropriate? What happens when the label is a designer brand, such … Continue reading Who made it? Draft standards for ethical labelling
In February 2006 I flew to India from Australia with camera man Mike Crowhurst, production manager Shalu Sood and my father Ken Butler to embark on a one month community art / design project that I had dreamt up the year before. My task was to see if it was possible to generate employment for … Continue reading Packaging Bollywood for Downunder–The Zaishu story