Working directly with over 1,000 women weavers in more than 50 communities on 12 islands, Threads of Life helps weavers to form independent cooperatives, recover the skills of their ancestors, manage their resources sustainably, and express their cultural identity while building financial security. From marriage gifts to everyday wear, as offerings to the ancestors or goods to trade or barter, traditional textiles have played integral parts in the social, spiritual and economic lives of the peoples of Indonesia for more than 2,000 years. The heirloom-quality textiles and baskets produced by these weaving groups are made with local materials and natural dyes to an exquisite standard usually seen only in museums.
In addition to working with weaving communities across Indonesia one of Thread of Life’s ambitions is to bring Indonesian natural dye and weaving traditions to the rest of the world. In 2017 Threads of Life launched a series of 5-12 day residential workshops that allow beginners to practise textiles and give artists the chance to learn from the Threads of Life team at their custom dye studio at the Umajati Retreat. This month from the 3rd -10th you can join the seven-day Creative Cultures workshop, discovering the roots of Balinese culture through hands-on workshops that delve into the resilience of Bali’s unique arts, crafts, and ritual practices (space limited to 8 participants). On 17-23 September, the seven-day Tribawana workshop allows you to awaken your creativity through Java’s ancient Three Worlds Creative Process with tradition keepers and batik artists Agus Ismoyo and Nia Fliam (space limited to 10 participants).