This virtual exhibit provides an overview of the different categories of West African textiles found at the Miami University Art Museum. The textiles covered in this exhibit are Kente cloth, Adinkra cloth, Baule cloth, mud cloth and Bogolanfini, and wax-resist textiles. Each cloth has its own unique story and place of origin. Many of these textiles worn symbolically to represent important events within the culture that they belong to. Through education about the history, make, and meaning of each textile, we hope to provide viewers with a better understanding of the complexity of African textiles.
Additionally, the final section of this exhibit covers Western use and appropriation of African textiles. This is an important piece to include in the discussion of African cloth as appropriation has frequently occurred in modern Western fashion. By promoting a greater understanding of the depth of African textiles, we can be more aware of problematic appropriation as consumers and help inspire greater cultural respect and understanding.
Initial exhibit created by Ben Krautheim, intern Fall 2020.