The History of African Textiles and Fabrics Many centuries ago, hair from animals was woven to insulate and protect homes. The color patterns are especially significant as each color has a noteworthy meaning. These are some Adire textile patterns with their meanings, courtesy: Chief Nike Davies, “Adire are indigo resist dyed cotton cloths that were made by women throughout Yorubaland in south-western Nigeria. The Ndebele women of Zululand, NW South Africa have been decorating the walls of their houses and compounds for generations-  a tradition called ukugwala which showed their design ability as worth of a good wife. African prints play a central role in Afrocentric fashion, but there’s more to these compelling designs than meets the eye. Most designs on masks tend to be geometrical and symmetrical. They are able to hold colours other textiles cannot, and the designs themselves act as a cultural currency and history for the beholder. You can do so right here and now by building a web page of your own within this web site. See more ideas about african symbols, african, symbols. Here are some of the more popular kente motifs and their interpretations. Some artifacts are incised with relief carving like the Shona headrest and some have carving as well as being masterfully sculpted into 3 dimensional forms like both the stools above. Facts about African Patterns 2: The African mask. Jan 16, 2015 - Explore Mother Abagbe's board "AFRICAN SYMBOLS" on Pinterest. White represents the beginning of process of learning and black, the accumulation of wisdom. Notice the precise, rhythmic rows of her hair braids, sometimes intricately decorated with their own recurring patterns. ... Geometric patterns are sometimes used to distinguish male from female masks. photos of textures in the sand could be reflective of those braids.... or the other way round? Jan 8, 2016 - Explore Natalie Oldham's board "Cultural Art", followed by 190 people on Pinterest. To err is human, and therefore, one should be conciliatory when one is offended. The most vividly coloured patterns had the same style as that seen in their beaded jewelry, aprons and other utility items. being so visually appealing, I see pattern making in Africa a, akin The complex murals of today only started relatively recently in the 1940's when Ndebele women began to have access to commercial paints. Fabric African Pattern. Tutsi basket patterns seem to me to have been derived from palm trees, either the fronds or the markings on the stalks which occur rhythmically at intervals. It seems to me to be a very fitting place to sign off on this huge page that is African Patterns as these barkcloths exhibit great spontaneity and musicality in their designs. The symbolic connotation is meaningfully applied by the artist... and comprehended by the wearer. Kente or Ashanti cloth from Ghana has over 300 different traditional patterns. African clothing can also be a symbol of creativity, status and allegiance to African tribal roots. The stamp can be simple geometric designs or curving shapes with specific meanings. These patterns are formed by unique methods of intertwining the threads of various colors. See more ideas about african symbols, symbols, african. Besidesbeing so visually appealing, I see pattern making in Africa as an innate thing, akinto rhythm: The pounding of maize in a bowl feels the same as the stamping of pigment on fabric..... the weaving of hair braids is the same soft rhythmic e… All rights reserved. Chevrons and zigzags exist in just about every form and facet of African decoration.... like in the wall structures of the ruins of Great Zimbabwe or the Asante stool seen above. Africa has a wealth of patterns, everywhere youlook you will see repetitions of shapes and colours, textures and lines laid out in allsorts of arrangements.Sowhat is so interesting about patterns? Sadly, in this modern era, a lot of the meaning and historical significance of various shapes or motifs is lost to us and can only be conjectured about. [RELATED ARTICLE: 54 African Wax Prints and the Story behind their Names] 17 Weave Patterns and Meanings. Produced in Zimbabwe, these original and unusual mosaic tables featured above have used both animal, reptile and geometric sources for the Africa-inspired, Africa Collection. Wax prints are a textile like no other. There are a lot of symbols and meanings to all the items that are put together to create a specific African pattern. Literal translation: Sooner or later one would stray into the path of the other. Historically, many forms of mathematical geometric variations have occurred in both repetitive border and all-over patterns. For example, like the palm tree which represents self-sufficiency but is used to highlight the notion that human beings are the opposite - that they are not self-sufficient! Do you want to exhibit your work globally? African Tribal Rain Cloth Women’s T-shirt, Eugene Andolsek – “Just Folk African Cloth” Mens T-Shirt, African Tribal Kuba Cloth Marriage Quilt Mens T-Shirt. African clothing can also be a symbol of creativity, status and allegiance to African tribal roots. This website copyright © 2010-2020 contemporary-african-art.com and Bronwen Evans. Deeply thrown afternoon shadows from trees and rocks lend themselves to beautiful intricacies of pattern. White: Like in many cultures, white symbolizes spirituality and purity. Vibrant and woven into long panels, Kente cloth is the classic and quintessential African style. They can communicate knowledge, feelings and values and therefore play an important role in Africans' concept of reality. You can do so right here and now by building a page in this website. From Native beadwork to urban graffiti, students can find the 'heritage algorithms' of their interest, learn their connection to STEM principles, and develop designs of their own creation. Take An example of where symbolic motifs and emblems are vigorously used are by the Ashanti tribes of Ghana and the Gyaman of Cote D'Ivoire who apply motifs to fabric, pottery and paper - visual representations of concepts and idioms. Sea shells and fish have beautiful intricate patterning for adornment and coral creates crazy outline shapes. See more ideas about african symbols, symbols and meanings, art. There are a lot of symbols and meanings to all the items that are put together to create a specific African pattern. Adinkra robes, seen here below worn by two Ashanti men, are stamped with motifs in various patterns that have symbolic significance and tell a story or recount a proverb. Kente cloth is one of the African most popular and beloved pieces of clothes. The patterns of Africa are derived from the traditional signs and symbols. That’s a lot of mud! More than simply a fashion statement, traditional African textiles such as Kuba cloth and Mudcloth have an incredibly rich history of a great and ingenious people. Like in the old photographic print below, the garments often featured bold designs executed in a black, paste-like paint that was mixed from natural sources like barks and roots, black soot and coconut oil. Bold pattern either painted, embellished, carved or etched is a powerful and expressive component of African mask design. It seems to me that these photos of textures in the sand could be reflective of those braids.... or the other way round? They may be rich in proverbial meaning and often signify the collective wisdom of the tribe. Women in the culture are wrapped in this fabric pattern after their initiation into adulthood and following childbirth. Black represents Africa; Red represents the blood of forefathers Almost every Ghanaian has a garment of kente cloth. On the land, observations of botanical items like leaves, trees, thorns, pods and seeds reveal elegant shapes, lines and patterning. Feb 22, 2014 - Explore Claudine Brown's board "African Symbols", followed by 178 people on Pinterest. Geometric shapes of diamonds and triangles are probably the most common shape for use in a multitude of ways; painted, incised, scraped, embossed, printed, embroidered... you name it. So much reference to use as a source! The African mask is decorated with pattern. Meaning of the word Kente. Yet, despite African patterns appearing on everything from handbags to formal gowns, many designers and fashion lovers alike are unaware that these african patterns themselves hold so much more than their beauty. Colour can determine regional and tribal characteristics and styles. Some are quite literal in their translation but others are representative, not representational. Kuba (Bushoong) cloth - from an early 20th C style, can have very graphic patterning and will always have different elements to it as it is generally made up of 3 panels. Apr 22, 2019 - Explore Kylie Michelle's board "African Symbols" on Pinterest. These patterns are formed by unique methods of intertwining the threads of various colors. So, too, do the camouflage markings on animals, birds and insects. Here, an antique document recording wall patterns from 1905 is used as a resource for a contemporary African textile design. Zanzibar, ca 1900, Elephant maskers, Bamileke, Cameroon-1930, Clay house, Nigeria to rhythm: The pounding of maize in a bowl feels the same as the stamping of pigment on fabric..... the weaving of hair braids is the same soft rhythmic exercise as plucking at an. African masks have a rich varied history. There are over 350 patterns for Kente Cloths. Abstract rhythms and deliberate contrasts are built up by leaving areas of stillness and quiet between the horizontal and longitudinal lines and the expressive free-flowing motifs that cover the cloth. Shoowa cloth is very structured in comparison and has dense and rhythmical patterning with overcast embroidery and cut-pile designs. The women of East Africa took plain white slave cloth as a blank canvas for embellishment, creating hand-painted variations which were often strongly patterned to make a social statement and elevate their status. Feb 22, 2014 - Explore Claudine Brown's board "African Symbols", followed by 178 people on Pinterest. Each leaf is hand cut and then dyed using natural resources such as indigo and mud.  Once the patterns are created the fabric is created using an embroidery technique that weaves fibers into strips. sorts of arrangements. So, too, do the camouflage markings on animals, birds and insects. The fan of palm leaves in shadow remind one of the spread out fan shapes seen both outside and within these round, woven placemats. [RELATED ARTICLE: 54 African Wax Prints and the Story behind their Names] 17 Weave Patterns and Meanings. The Voltaic people of Ghana apply red, white and black colors to their masks in intricate geometrical patterns with symbolic significance..... as do the Bamileke of Cameroon. It creates a quintessential African look. The important thing to remember is that they are constantly evolving and new influences in current societies are reflected in new motifs. The kente cloth is made in different styles, colors and We feature bronze works, About me  |  Contact  |  Privacy Policy  |  Blog  |  Newsletter. 100+ African Symbols ideas | african symbols, african, symbols But in the hands of those who love them, these quickly gain names — and deep, fascinating cultural meanings. This hand-woven fabric is used in both male and female clothing, but the patterns and colors differ according to gender, status, and region of Africa. The word ‘kente’ means ‘basket’. Of all the genres by which patterning is exhibited in Africa, textiles carry the most exciting and most complex form of repetitive design. Whether you’re studying times tables or applying to college, Classroom has the answers. Patterns on masks and textiles were used as a form of identity for tribes and outsiders could be easily identified if their masks and robes were foreign to the area. Showcasing the diverse cultures of Africa along with the rich and vibrant color palate, influential fashion designers all over the globe have embraced the colors, patterns, cultural dress and tribal motifs of Africa. So Deep river waters make whorls and eddys and at the ocean, waves create textures in the sand. There are various methods of applying and making patterns: Mbuti barkcloth, (known also as Pongo cloth), is an artistic expression of the singing woman foragers of the Ituri forest in NE Zaire. Ankh : ... As symbols play such an important role in the African conception of reality, a sound understanding of African patterns of thought and feeling requires an appreciation of the nature and function of symbolism as a medium of communication in African culture. Yes, Africans wear have worn VLISCO textiles and many Nana Benz have prospered from it, but that doesn’t mean that … Gold: With so many hoping for a prosperous and rich life, it’s no surprise that gold is used so often as it represents wealth and fertility. They can depict anything from animal and human behaviour to important events, or they can simply reflect their environment and various aspects of their lives in shapes and emblems. It is also a medicinal color representing health in life. 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