Thursday, 10 January 2008

Hair and there

Sorry, Nalda, for not responding in recent times. Now that I'm out of Craft Victoria, I have a little more freedom to follow this interesting train of thought.

It seems that one of the marvels of fodder in South Africa was to be able to make art from a material so easy to access. This is a strong feature of art and craft in southern Africa.

What other materials might nature provide? I was talking with Hlengiwe Dube about the Zulu attitudes to hair. She told me about the remarkable practice of Zulu women on marriage to have their hair woven into a headdress (inhoko), which is kept for life.

I was talking about this to my hairdresser today. She was saying that all hair, regardless of race, must grow. So I wonder how this is maintained over time?

The inhoko has now evolved into an artificial headdress. The particular weaving structure has developed from the way hair was braided.

This evolution makes you think how various hair crafts might translate into other artificial materials.

Just around the corner from me is one of the many African hair braiding shops that have opened in recent times. Perhaps I should ask them?

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