African Textiles Today by Chris Spring
”A fascinating insight into the living history of Africa
African textiles are patterned with stories that range far beyond the time of the creation or the lifetime of their creator. In Africa, cloth is used to commemorate important events, people or political struggles that in other parts of the world might be recorded in writing, or marked by a plaque or monument.
This beautifully illustrated book deciphers these hidden stories, whilst also revealing the relevance of African textiles today, exploring how the dynamic traditions in African cloth-making have provided inspiration for the continent’s foremost contemporary artists and photographers. Africa’s long engagement with the peoples of the Mediterranean and the islands of the Atlantic and Indian Oceans provides a story of change and continuity, showing how ideas, techniques, materials and markets have adapted and flourished.
Accompanied by 200 stunning illustrations revealing the rich variety of textile traditions throughout Africa, this new work showcases some of the world’s finest examples of textile arts.”
Front cover detail
Detail of the sculpture Woman’s Cloth by El Anatsui. The piece was inspired by the Kente cloth tradition. Metal foil bottle tops. Wire. Nsukka. Nigera, 2002.
Chris Spring is curator of the African collection at the British Museum. He is the author of numerous books on African art and culture including African Arms and Armour, North African Textiles and African Art in Detail (British Museum Press), and Angaza Afrika: African Art Now.
Publishing October 2012 256 pages 200 colour illustrations ISBN 978 0 7141 1559 7 HB £30