Travel pretty much makes it on everyone’s bucket list. There are many great reasons to travel – from just wanting an opportunity to relax or the thrill of gazing upon an ancient temple, to tasting REAL Chinese food or just have the experience of getting from one place to another on a plane, kayak, motorbike, zip line or bicycle, etc, etc.
It is most always a fine adventure to encounter a different place in the world, soaking in all its colors, tastes, sounds and smells - as well as being immersed in an unfamiliar culture’s innovative ways of dressing, speaking, living and artistic expression.
It’s this global diversity that makes travel so intoxicating. Our senses are awakened in every new place. It looks different, sounds different and tastes different and it broadens our personal world and leads us to new exciting discoveries. Sadly, some of that special ‘different’ is giving way to a lot more of the same. (Think global chain stores and fast food popping up in some of the most unsuspecting places.)
It’s just that Indonesia wouldn’t be Indonesia without it’s batik and Thailand wouldn’t be Thailand without it’s hand woven silk ….And the Karen Hill Tribe people without their finely crafted silver? I don’t think the Karen people and their silver can actually be considered separately from one another!
Some of our most precious traditional art forms from around the globe are struggling to survive. Global art forms which have taken, literally, generations to develop are being replaced by machine made items that aren’t the same, aren’t as nice and certainly do not hold the same meaning. They take away the sense of a culture’s identity and the community built among the makers. Of even more concern is that the loss of our global cultural art forms robs people (most often women) of an opportunity to make a living in a meaningful and culturally significant way.
Out of Asia is about finding this global hand made treasure and bringing it, along with its inspiration, to appreciative audiences as beautiful wearable art, much of it one-of-a-kind and all of it infused with the energy, heart and soul of it’s maker. That’s a win for everyone, everywhere.