Greetings and Happy Midweek - and HAPPY NEW YEAR!
May 2023 be a milestone year as we all continue our journeys - and may our pathways lead from one wonderful cross-cultural community to another, this one included!
How about some inspiration to start the year off?! Yesterday, I came across this amazing account of cultural story-telling and empowerment which has totally engaged me. It embraces so many levels of Collaboration, one of our core Global SKILLs PROACTive Strategies.
The story is based in South Africa, and kind of begins 2 decades ago - but really showcases centuries of local cultural dynamics and storytelling, which I believe encompass universally relevant facets of cross-cultural communications and community building.
It is all about the Keiskamma Tapestries, which are being created by groups of women in the Eastern Cape region (see Links below for details). From a “simple” project to help empower women by teaching them embroidery to create marketable items, the Keiskamma women have become an artistic power house in their own right. Their collectives create, showcase and sell stunningly intricate tapestries depicting history and current events as well as local cultural values and practices. Their work is being exhibited and appreciated globally, and I can only imagine inspiring others to similar endeavors!
It so reminds me, for example, of a ‘simple’ embroidery project I started for several women with donated supplies in Sindian, the village where I lived for a decade in southern Senegal. I can share more at length about that in a different Connect, but suffice it to say here that from 2 or 3 beginners that group also grew over a number of years into an enormously successful, locally led co-op with several generations of women and girls creating beautiful items for their personal and family use.
Tapestries tell stories, and if given half a chance, I think we can see through history that people everywhere enjoy creating, using and sharing them.
How about you ~ do you have a tapestry tradition in your life?
Share about that with a friend or note it here.
And check out the Global SKILLs LINKs below for more on The Keiskamma tapestries and other tapestry-related resources.
Thanks for being part of this Connect community.
Until next week,
Global SKILLs LINKs
~ Original story which introduced me to this awesome Keiskamma community: https://www.cnn.com/style/article/keiskamma-art-project-johannesburg-exhibition-2022-spc-intl/index.html
~ Another set of tapestries, which impacted me personally as a young girl when I saw them in the Cloisters Museum in New York City: https://www.metmuseum.org/primer/met-cloisters/unicorn-tapestries-story
~ And a brief history of tapestries in general: https://tapestry-art.com/tapestries-history/
* Through my business Global SKILLs and several partner subsidiaries I offer unique cross-cultural consulting and training including:
3 Dimensional Dynamics Model: (which we explored this week)
1st dimension = HOME ; 2nd dimension = HOST ; 3rd dimension = HARBOR)
PROACTive Learning Strategies: PRO = PROfile, PROcess, PROgram
ACT = Application, Collaboration (which we explored this week) and Transformation
~ contact me for more information on this model and these strategies and how you might use them in your current programming: firstname.lastname@example.org
2023 ~ Celebrating 40+ years of working in
intercultural communications and global community building
“It takes a community to build a community”
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