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Batik Handicraft and the Black Hmong

Posted on 7/4/2017 2:27:00 PM in What We're Watching

A note from independent filmmaker David Conover on why he chose this film:

Textiles can appear deceptively simple. To see the artistry and time that goes into making batik textiles is therefore a gift. Batik is a centuries-old technique of creating intricate—sometimes symbolic—designs on fabric by applying melted beeswax, and then putting the garment through multiple stages of indigo dyeing. The work is a painstaking and time-consuming tradition that also involves harvesting and treating hemp, harvesting and processing indigo dye, and imagining and implementing the designs of each fabric. Batik is found in Indonesia, Singapore, Sri Lanka, and in villages like Lao Chai in Sapa, Vietnam, featured in this short film. Shop owner Ly Thi My describes batik’s ties to people’s live—past and present. We can see why UNESCO has designated the tradition of batik an Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity.

Produced by Kyle Sandilands

About David Conover:

David Conover is an award-winning filmmaker and conservationist whose work has appeared on Discovery Channel, PBS, and National Geographic Explorer. He is the founder of Compass Light Productions and the nonprofit Conservation Media Group, and was recently the Coastal Studies Scholar at Bowdoin College. Learn more about David here.

See colorful examples of batik created by Vietnam’s northern hill tribes when you join the optional pre-trip extension of O.A.T.’s Inside Vietnam adventure.

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