Indigo Shade Map is an educational online map and a space for cultural exchanges showing a variety of indigo plants and connecting indigo farmers, dyers, and hobbyists from various cultures in one place. Indigo is a metaphor for the cultural perspective and plays a pivotal role because it connects everyone on the map.
In this session, indigo growers from three different locations share their experiences with the environment, cultures, and languages.
This event was held on Friday, April 30, 2021. A recording of the night's session is included below, along with individual interviews with each panelist.
Learn More About the Panelists
Kenya Miles is the artist & alchemist behind Traveling Miles Studio and Blue Light Junction. Kenya’s work honors ancient practices while harmoniously drawing on a distinctive contemporary voice. From the valleys of Oaxaca, Mexico to the red clay roads of Ntonso, Ghana, Kenya's process is a ledger of years of wandering and apprenticing around the globe. She is currently an Artist-in-Residence at MICA and a farmer for the Baltimore Natural Dye Initiative. Kenya has facilitated workshops at the Berkeley Art Museum, Headlands Center for the Arts, and the UC Berkeley Botanical Garden. She was a guest artist at BMA’s “The Possible” and recently had a solo exhibition “The Central Sun” in San Francisco. Kenya is an avid traveler, gardener, and above all else Indigo’s mother (her son).
Gasali Adeyemo is the third born of five from the small village, Ofatedo, located in Nigeria. Gasali's mother was his first and most important teacher in learning the traditional arts of the Yoruba Tribe. In 1990 he attended the Nike Center for Arts and Culture, where he remained for six years studying traditional Yoruba batik, adire eleko, tie-dye and indigo. Eventually, the opportunity to exhibit his work and travel outside of Nigeria presented itself. This experience opened the door to greater opportunities, and he has since been traveling the world conducting workshops and exhibitions. His recent workshops include Aya Fiber Studio, Mendocino Art Center, and John Campbell Folk School. In the future, he plans to continue to travel worldwide, sharing the arts and culture of the Yoruba people of Nigeria. Visit www.yorubaindigo.com for more information.
Brittany Boles is an artisan, educator, and indigo doula tending Persicaria Tinctoria and other dye plants in collaboration with Northfork 53 farm in the unceded territory of the Chinook, Clatsop and Nehalem nations (Nehalem, Oregon). "My practice is driven by an explorative source connection: The exquisite dance of pigment extraction, the playfulness of leaves crushed by hand, and the mystery of indirubin. Indigo has become a guide, friend, and metaphor touching every hem of my life. The full circle soil-seed-sprout-pigment-vat transformation is what calls to me most and achieving blue fiber has become secondary, incidental art. The craft of the vat, plant processes, and communal blue kinship have become the full expression of my art and inspiration." In addition to in-person and virtual Intuitive Indigo courses, Britt works collaboratively with other artisans, farmers, and educators on projects including the Indigo Pigment Extraction Methods global network, Blue Biographies seed-to-story interview series, Indigofest, and the Natural Dye Podcast.
Kim, Wang Sik
Mr. Kim is the Vice President of the Naju Cultural Foundation and the Executive Director of the Natural Dyeing Museum in Naju, S.Korea. Although Mr. Kim originally studied Law from college, he completely switched his career path to the Korean natural dye and its tradition and have been practicing it for the past 30 years. Mr. Kim has been teaching natural dye classes and cultivating many apprentices at his natural dye studio “Gallery Poolvit”. Mr. Kim natural dyed artworks have been introduced by many exhibitions including his 9 solo exhibitions and Cheongwadae, also known as the Blue House, the executive office and official residence of the President of the Republic of Korea.
현재 한국의 지방자치 도시 나주시에서 설립한 공공재단인 나주시천연염색문화재단의 상임이사를 맡고 있으며 한국천연염색박물관 관장이다. 대학에서 법학을 공부 했으나 천연염색의 길로 인생방향을 설정한 뒤 30여년을 천연염색하며 한 길을 걷고 있다. 그동안 개인적으로는 천연염색 공방 “갤러리 풀빛”을 설립하여 작품 활동을 해왔으며 교육 강좌를 개설하여 수많은 제자를 배출해 왔다. 그동안 9회의 개인전시를 개최하였고 그 외 많은 그룹전시에 참여 하였으며 작품이 한국의 대통령궁인 청와대의 의전상품으로 선정된 바 있다.
This event series is supported in part by the Maryland State Arts Council.