Under African Skies
An exhibition linking Africa’s ancient textile traditions with contemporary creative innovation.
Friday 5th to Sunday 28th April 2024.
Curated by Magie Relph and Bob Irwin of The African Fabric Shop

Andrew Haughton of The Nomads Tent says:

'Under African Skies' will be a land mark exhibition at The Nomads Tent which we have been planning for 2 years with our friends Magie Relph and Bob Irwin of The African Fabric Shop. When not in their shop in Meltham in the Yorkshire Pennines, Magie and Bob have traveled around Africa for nearly 40 years, following the textile journey of craftspeople they personally know and documenting the history of those textiles. Their particular genius, and our great delight, is how they share with us the richness and integrity of these textile traditions. In this exhibition you'll find their range of hands-on fabric crafting kits, well designed textile artifacts and clothes, textile art for walls and, crowning it all, a curated collection of important, representative pieces prepared for this exhibition. 

Musa with kola and indigo sampler 2017

Magie Relph and Bob Irwin have exhibited and lectured widely, published 'African Wax Print: A Textile Journey', written many articles, given countless workshops and organised with others the immensely popular 'World Textile Day' markets appearing for over 20 years all over the UK.

You can see their fabulous and completely unique ranges of sustainably sourced goods on their website and in their shop in Yorkshire. 

Pat Archibald and the Scottish Textile Art Group, S.T.A.G will also be exhibiting their new collection of quilts inspired by African Kuba cloth. Come along and see how they have interpreted the history, heritage, technique and customs associated with Kuba Cloth to make these exquisite quilts.

6.30pm on Wednesday 10th April: "From Trash to Treasure: Making something special from nothing much" with Pat Archibald.
3pm on 25th April: "The People Behind the Cloth" with Magie Relph on a ‘digital journey’ to West Africa, and 4.30pm on the 25th "Traditions and Innovations" with Bob Irwin on how the market has driven change.
6pm, 25th April: Kora concert by the highly accomplished Josh Doughty, pupil of the renowned master kora player Toumani Diabaté
10 am on 26th April: "Postcards from Africa", hands-on stitching workshop with Magie Relph.

Event tickets can be purchased here:
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