Al Sadu Cooperative Weaving Society
Kuwait Textile Arts Association
Cultural season 2015-2016
Ahlan Wa sahlan …A warm welcome to all KTAA members old and new…
In many of my past addresses to the KTAA, I have always started my address with a description of AlSadu Society’s vision and goals. I will do it again …
Al Sadu Society , Beit Al Sadu or commonly known as Sadu House is a cultural center concerned with preserving , promoting and furthering the understanding of Kuwait’s traditional textile arts . Its vision can be summarized in two words; education and inspiration. Its main goals are to promote and celebrate the evolving role of crafts as strong cultural symbols and stress their potential development as contemporary forms of creative expression and cultural exchange.
I am very happy to say that many of these goals have been achieved over the years through our programs of documentation, education, training and the revitalization of traditional Sadu weavings.
I am also pleased to say that many of the above goals have been the guiding objectives that encouraged the inception of the Kuwait Textile Art Association , KTAA ,back in 1994 . It started as an idea to bring together a group of textile enthusiasts, of different cultural backgrounds and artistic energies, to meet and work jointly, under the auspices of the AlSadu House, serving as a platform for creative skill and artistic dialogue in the field of textile arts.
The KTAA is still this vibrant group of textile enthusiasts, headed today by Mrs. Donna AlShaya. Donna AlShaya joined the KTAA in 2009 as an interested admirer of textiles and two years later became its president. Recently Donna has shared with me her vision to energize the KTAA and promote the quality of the work of its creative members. I thank Donna AlShaya for her great efforts.
I applaud and support wholeheartedly all endeavor to carry the KTAA forward.
I would also like to mention and emphasize with you our alliance with, Khayt, “Threads”. A group of young Kuwaiti fiber arts enthusiasts, crochet in essence, who expressed the desire to meet and work under the auspices of the Sadu House. A young alliance that stared almost two years ago, gaining gradually more momentum and strength.
This year’s Cultural Agenda, contains many interesting exhibitions and events. It gives me pleasure to share with you some of this season’s highlights.
We start this season with the first Peruvian textile crafts Exposition, to be held on November 16-19 at Sadu House in collaboration with the Peruvian Embassy. This event will focus on Peru’s rich weaving traditions and textile arts, presented through an exhibition opening on the 16th under the patronage of the Minister of Information Sheikh Salman Sabah Al Salem Al Homod AlSabah, with a lecture by Professor Lucero Rodriguez, on Tuesday the 17th, to be held within the KTAA monthly talks. This lecture will discuss the origins of Peruvian textiles with a comparative study on Kuwait’s traditional Sadu weaving. How do two weaving traditions and design patterns from countries far apart converge and meet? I personally look forward to hearing Professor Rodriguez’s insight on this subject matter.
May I add that this cultural event springs from our “Textile Cultures” program , which aims to encourage cultural exchange through weaving and textile craft traditions. This program has had previous successful exchange collaborations with different embassies and has helped in fostering more understanding of the different cultural craft traditions.
In December we welcome back Lesli Robertson, Senior Lecturer at the University of North Texas, and Fulbright Specialist. Last year Lesli visited us in conjunction with the US Embassy and the Qurain Festival and gave a very informative lecture on her work in Africa on engaging in community – based artwork, which lead to a very constructive workshop at Sadu House, Designing for Innovation, a collaborative effort involving house weavers and members with the purpose to explore new interpretations of Sadu symbols and objects.
We are pleased to have her back in Kuwait, to continue her significant work with us at Sadu House and several partners to create an interactive community artwork focused on Sadu weaving. We look forward to a very exciting project in the making!
In January 2016, another event to note is the Palestinian embroidery exhibition, which will fall within the Qurain Festival held by the National Council of Culture, Arts and letters. Sadu House will host a very meaningful exhibition on the Palestinian art of embroidery, as showcased in the beautiful work of INNASH (which means “revival” in Arabic )the Association for the preservation of Palestinian culture through embroidery , a non- profit organization based in Lebanon. The three day event will also involve a one day workshop on the Palestinian cross stitch.
The Bedouin weaving classes for adults and children remain an important educational and training feature in our Agenda. This season’s, Fun with Textiles children’s workshops will be supervised by Salma Khalid whose wonderful efforts we thank and applaud, just like her exceptionally talented and dedicated mother Alesha Khalid.
A special mention has to be about the KTAA‘s excellent monthly talks, and annual textile exhibition which are highly appreciated events, that continue to attract much interest and attention.
Finally mornings at Sadu House, especially when we have our live, hands on weaving demonstration by a master weaver stay as a colorful fixture of Sadu House and always provide a relaxing and meaningful cultural facility for the public.
Thank you …God bless you all and looking forward to seeing you in our forthcoming cultural events and textile celebrations!
Altaf Salem A. AlSabah
Honorary President & Patron