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Neat site on Bamana (Mali) Mud Cloth

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From: Judy Decker (jdecker_at_TeacherArtExchange)
Date: Sun Mar 16 2003 - 07:43:12 PST


Dear Art Educators,

I forgot to mention yesterday about this neat site on the making of Bamana
Mud cloth. It is a relatively new site put on by the Smithsonian Museum of
Narural History.The intro has music from Mali.

http://www.mnh.si.edu/africanvoices/mudcloth/index_flash.html
Discovering Mudcloth -- Explore the many meanings of mudcloth and make your
own Bogolanfini. See how Nakunte Diarra makes mudcloth and learn about the
symbols she uses. Traditional patterns refer to Bamana culture and history.
Be sure to see how the designer and painter are using this tradtional art in
new ways.

I have several links to this site from mine - on African Links, Textiles and
within my Internet lesson (on Weaving and Cloth Examples pages).

The other sections of African Voices are nice too (that site has been posted
before):
http://www.mnh.si.edu/africanvoices/ The interactive timeline is neat.

I have never had my students make mudcloth -- but I have had them simulate
the look using bleach on black paper. They used Q-tips to apply the bleach.
I had as many examples of Mudcloth I could find -- with meanings of symbols
when available. They created border designs to frame a reduction linoleum
print made on hand-made paper. Our prints were about 5" x 7" printed in
brown, gold and black (other colors were available for other colors of
paper). I know bleach isn't the safest thing to use with kids --but we
didn't have any probelms with it. I put a small amount in Solo cups. Linda
Wood has used bleach wiht second graders and had no problems.

I hope you are able to use this site with your students.

Judy Decker

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