Textiles from China’s ethnic groups will be on display at Linden Gallery from Aug. 30 through Sept. 15. Collected by the Lindens for many years, the collection includes elaborately embroidered baby carriers, decorative pieces, and clothing.
Minority women in the southwest regions of China create the work. Traditionally, the women weave cotton and hemp into fabric while it is considered a man’s duty to dye the cloth, often in a deep indigo. The rare purchase of silk from eastern China is indicative of wealth, as are the stamped silver embellishments favored by the Miao people.
The work is done from memory; there are no patterns. Girls as young as eight-years-old are taught to embroider. Each woman is free to individualize her work with her choice of motifs. Highly decorated garments are reserved for special events, like weddings or festivals, especially the New Year celebrations.
The exceptions are the baby carriers. When a mother wraps a carrier around her, she displays her hopes and dreams on her back. Designs reveal symbols such as wealth (silver), hope (butterfly) and beauty (peony). Several of the baby carriers are framed as exquisite wall hangings.
During Labor Day weekend, all contemporary fashion will be 20 percent off.
Linden Gallery, open 10 am – 5 pm daily, is located at 12001 Mink River Road in Ellison Bay. For more information call 920.854.2487.