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 Post subject: Taiwan weaving stuff
PostPosted: Mon Apr 08, 2013 6:55 pm 
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Joined: Mon May 24, 2004 7:35 pm
Posts: 176
Location: east coast
Hi all – I am back from 3 weeks in Taiwan and 1 week in Kuching, Borneo. My hosts in Taiwan whom I can never repay arranged many visits for me to aboriginal villages and to meet important weavers several of whom have been actively and selflessly devoting themselves to the preservation of aboriginal weaving and culture and the improvement of the lives of many aboriginals. I saw too much to describe here but thought some of you might be interested in some things.

So in no particular order, I note that I was able to locate and purchase an old gungu or “weaving box”- a part of the backstrap loom used in the past by generations of Atayal weavers.

Note - I forgot that the pictures get shown in "reverse order".

I am glad I have it but sad that it is no longer being used although there are attempts by several courageous women to reinvigorate use of this loom. Here is a picture of an modern Atayal woman weaving.

Yuma Taru is one of these wonderful women. A most charming, selfless, skilled and scholarly person. Here is a picture of Yuma in the Cultural center she built. The government has condemned it as not meeting building codes so it exists in a sort of limbo.

It is difficult to say too much about Yuma. She has spent years “reverse engineering” many old woven tribal patterns to preserve the knowledge of making them much like Prof. Tsai has. She also runs and is trying to improve a school for the children of a poor village in the hills above Miaoli, has built a cultural center and promotes interest in their culture. And more. Incidentally, the children put on a wonderful welcoming choral greeting for us. She was kind enough to inscribe and sign a book – Reappearance of Atayal: Catalogue of Reproductions of Pan-Atayal Traditional Costumes. Pub. National Museum of Prehistory, Sept. 2008 – for me in which she had written a chapter – Return to Perfection of the Atayal Life. Anyone seeking to get in touch with Yuma – lihan.workshop@gmail.net.

Another woman – Yuli Taki - bsuring@gmail.com – is also trying to preserve cultural patterns by commercializing use of them. In the picture, Yuli is the one wearing a blouse with the Truku’s traditional pattern. The Truku used to be one of the several subgroupings of the Atayal peoples but are now officially recognized as an independent group. However, their weaving has much in common with other Atayal peoples. The aboriginal groups seem to be fractioning at a great rate. Truku textiles are characterized by their light weight, thinness and quite color, patterns being mainly single lozenges.

These women deserve all the credit and help due them.

It’s a very tough row to hoe to preserve a culture, its arts and crafts and especially its defining spiritual life against the forces of secular “modernization”. What to do? There was an unnecessary apology by the singing teacher of the children that they have not had the benefit of a professional musician. My unvoiced response was – keep it that way!

I saw much more on this trip and many Taiwanese people seem genuinely concerned about preserving the aboriginal cultures. It is heartening.


Attachments:
File comment: Yuli is second from the right standing. She is wearing a blouse with the traditional Truku pattern.
yuli_taki_et_al_w.jpg
yuli_taki_et_al_w.jpg [ 115.71 KiB | Viewed 3108 times ]
File comment: Yuma is on the far right in the cultural center she built.
yuma_w.jpg
yuma_w.jpg [ 115.67 KiB | Viewed 3108 times ]
File comment: A modern Atayal woman weaving on the backstrap loom. You can see how she presses her feet against the box to control the tension.
a_modern_atayal_woman_weavi.jpg
a_modern_atayal_woman_weavi.jpg [ 106.8 KiB | Viewed 3108 times ]
File comment: a view of just the box. Wood and about 100 years old.
atayal_weaving_box__w.jpg
atayal_weaving_box__w.jpg [ 116.93 KiB | Viewed 3108 times ]
File comment: weaving box + backstrap equipment. Box - 7" x 12.25" x 36". Box is hollow and also used as a drum to signal man bringing a head back to the village
weaving_box_with_equipments.jpg
weaving_box_with_equipments.jpg [ 108.54 KiB | Viewed 3108 times ]

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Apr 10, 2013 6:06 pm 
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Joined: Mon May 24, 2004 7:35 pm
Posts: 176
Location: east coast
I forgot to include a picture of some of the tribal patterns. These are newly woven. There are hardly any old authentic examples. In museums or private collections.


Attachments:
File comment: Shown to me by Yuma in the village "Maipuwan".
aboriginal patterns.jpg
aboriginal patterns.jpg [ 142.53 KiB | Viewed 3085 times ]

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 Post subject: Re: Taiwan weaving stuff
PostPosted: Thu Sep 12, 2013 10:58 am 
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Joined: Tue Mar 13, 2012 10:22 am
Posts: 3
Are these beautiful tribal clothes are made from these simple bamboo instruments? It's looking quite interesting for me because i have never seen this type of weaving. How many days it takes to prepare a shirt cloth?

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