Sunday, 10 May 2009

Earlier work 2: Uganda

We had the privilege to live in Kampala, Uganda in 2003 and 2004. We had a great time and we loved living in the African Jungle and on the equator. I have very fond memories of those times. I bought a few fabric paintings at the local craft market but never did anything with them until after we left the country. I wanted to make a memory quilt but it took me quite a while to decide how to do it. While in Kampala I also bought a big piece of bark-cloth. It is a textile the locals produce from the bark of a local wild-fig tree. The trees are stripped once a year. The bark then regrows, so it is a renewable resource and ecologically friendly as no trees are destroyed. They use it to make household goods and clothes.
Eventually I decided to make another mola-type wall-hanging by combining the fabric-paintings, the bark-cloth and some African beads. The nice thing about the bark-cloth is that it doesn't fray so it is very easy do cut-away work. The scenes depicted on the fabric paintings are very typical Ugandan scenes and I sometimes get very sentimental looking at them.

The creative use of bicycles always amazed me. It can be anything from a family vehicle to a complete shop on two wheels.

These wire bicycles are made by a local Kampala artist. Unfortunately I do not know his name but his bicycles are in high demand and as you can see in these photos it is a very realistic depiction of live in Uganda.
This wonderful collection of sculptures is in the foyer of the Sheraton Hotel Kampala.

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