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African Textiles

Colour and Creativity Across a Continent

John Gillow


A lavishly illustrated and encyclopaedic, continent-wide survey of the textile traditions of Africa


This book comprehensively surveys and celebrates in over 570 spectacular colour photographs the traditional, handcrafted, indigenous textiles of the entire continent of Africa.

Covering, region by region, the handmade textiles of West, North, East, Central and Southern Africa, African Textiles outlines the vast array of techniques used as well as the different types of loom, materials and dyes that help to create these sumptuous textiles. In addition, the important influences on textile production - religion, culture, trade, tradition, fashion and the changing role of women - are assessed in each of the different regions of Africa.

With a useful glossary and map, a guide to collections open to the public, and suggestions for further reading, this book provides a wealth of information on the rich art of African textiles.

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'Spectacular ... this book really does span a whole continent ... a wealth of detail in this book which would be useful and fascinating for makers of all disciplines'
Craftsman Magazine

'This lovely book is a visual feast which enriches our knowledge of the textile crafts of Africa'
The Textile Directory Online

Product Information

Book Details

Format: Paperback

Edition Type: Compact edition

Size: 27.7 x 21.6 cm

Extent: 240 pp

Illustrations: 585

Publication date: 18 January 2016

ISBN: 9780500292211

Contents List

Introduction: The Diversity of African Textiles • West Africa • North Africa • East Africa Central Africa • Southern Africa

About the Author

John Gillow has spent over thirty years studying, collecting and lecturing on textiles. His books include Arts and Crafts of India (with Ilay Cooper and Barry Dawson), Indian Textiles (with Nicholas Barnard), Traditional Indonesian Textiles, World Textiles (with Bryan Sentance) and African Textiles.

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