60 minutes, DVD There is a village just outside Calcutta, India, where every family has a hand loom. As you pass the houses, the air is pierced by the “clack clack clack” of flying shuttles. In the family courtyards, threads are starched, warps are prepared, and bolts of finished cloth are evaluated with discerning eyes. In an age when cloth manufacture is dominated by computer-driven industrial mills, what are the virtues of hand weaving? What is the magic of the hand-loomed cloth? This is our second feature-length documentary film on craft. Here you will find works of great beauty and skill, ingenious variations, and delicate figures. Shot in rural locations in Africa, Laos, Indonesia, India, and Pakistan, this documentary takes you to the world of looms, weaves, and artisans.
90 minutes, DVD Modern synthetic dyes can colour almost any material in a vast range of hues. So powerful and far reaching is this technology that it comes as a surprise to learn that only 150 years ago absolutely everything was dyed naturally. In this, our third feature-length documentary, we look at an astonishing range of dye techniques - from the caracol purpura snail in Mexico to the lac insects of laos, from jackfruit root to the most famous root of all: madder. The resurgence of natural dyes and our contemporary ideas of colour will be explored in a historical context and in relation to the rise of a global colour industry.
60 minutes, DVD Indigo: A World of Blue" shot on location at the Pitchi Reddy indigo farm in southern India. The work also features indigo use in Sindh, Pakistan; the Vientiane District of Loas; the island of Sumba, Indonesia; Yogyakarta, Indonesia, village Dhamadka, India; and Suleymanköy, Turkey (the village which does most of the wool dying for carpet making co-operatives involved in the DOBAG project). Featuring renowned indigo scholar Jenny Balfour Paul speaking about indigo's facinating history, traditions, superstitions and lore.
30 min. DVD Through the Eye of a Needle: Stories From and Indian Desert is the story of a unique group of craftswomen. Follow their journey as they return to creating the world-class embroidery that made their ancestors famous. The incredible stories of the women from the Kutch Mahila Vikas Sangathan co-operative (KMVS) are recorded here through video, song, laughter, and stitch. History here is worn as generations of knowledge are passed down through embroidered designs. Long a valuable item of trade, the embroideries also provide a common ground for women to meet and bring their stories to the world. Experience the amazing landscape of the Kutch desert on India’s western border, the remarkable diversity of the communities who live here, and the breathtaking colours of their textiles.