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Batik is an ancient textile production technique with roots in Indonesia. In Africa batik has a long history and is still used today to produce local textiles with techniques that have been passed down from generation to generation usually mother to daughter. The Creation of Handmade Batik In Ghana is a fascinating visual essay that takes the viewer through the elaborate process. Part of a Google Arts and Culture feature the story was documented by Rahmée, founder of The Justine Project who travelled to Ghana to the Accra studio of Kwame a local batik artist who took her through the process.

Starting with an array of stamps carved from foam and wood each display motifs that will be dipped into melted wax to create patterns on the fabrics. Some of the motifs date back to the legendary Ashanti kingdom. The stamps are meticulously applied by hand to cotton fabrics. The batik artists make use of other tools and methods like brushes, and dripping and crinkling wax to create different patterns on the fabrics. In between each wax application, the cloths are dipped into buckets of colour building up the patterned layers that are revealed when the wax is eventually removed by washing water. The end result are colourful and unique handmade batik fabrics each with a story to tell.

Handmade Batik In Ghana Carved wooden stamp
Handmade Batik In Ghana stamp dipped in wax
Handmade Batik In Ghana stamp the cloth
Handmade Batik In Ghana brushing the cloth with wax
Handmade Batik In Ghana printed textile

The Justine Project is based on the concept of training the trainer. Giving skilled people in developing countries the training they need to help them pass on their skills and knowledge by training others and in the process creating the ripple effect needed to uplift their communities.

Additional details:

To see the full feature visit: https://artsandculture.google.com/exhibit/the-creation-of-handmade-batik-in-ghana/

For further information about the Justine Project visit: www.theprojectjustine.com

[Image credits: The images shown are sourced from The Project Justine on Google. If downloaded and used elsewhere please credit accordingly.]

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