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Gualala Arts

Promoting public interest and participation in the arts since 1961.

Archive of past events: 2004 through 2014

Gualala Arts Lecture Series presents:
African Culture: Textiles and Dance

with Rebecca Jarrett
Thursday, June 27, 2013, 7:00 p.m.
Admission is $5

Ananse Village: Zulu dolls Rebecca Jarrett plans to include interesting photos of Ghana as she spins an interesting tale about the significance of textiles in African and other third world cultures. In an age when multinational companies use large factories to manufacture cheap clothing, Jarrett wants to explain the role traditional fabric design from local cotton plays in the social structure and economy of West African culture.

With her husband, Paajoe, Jarrett owns and operates Ananse Village in Fort Bragg, where the couple sells African arts and crafts. Some of their profits help provide medical care and educational opportunities to the African communities where they obtain their merchandise.

Of particular interest to Jarrett is The Poverty Reduction Center, a non-governmental agency (NGO) that provides workspace, training and material for the education of single women in the art of making batik cloth for the local markets. The intention is that, once trained, the women will become independent businesswomen and make room for new trainees.

Ananse Village storefront Ananse Village is a buyer of these vibrant textiles, many of which can be seen on the store's website, The store's name "Ananse" also has special meaning. Ananse is the clever spider in West African folklore who appears in many stories tricking people. Artists and quilters will especially appreciate the colors, textures, patterns and craftsmanship involved in creating beautiful batik textiles.

African Culture: Music Inspired by Ananse's cleverness, Jarrett and her husband plan to use the programs supported by their outreach to improve the lives of third world citizens. They are particularly interested in bypassing exploitative middlemen in the clothing trade and working directly for the benefit of the workers so these artisans can have a living wage to house, feed and educate their families.

After living in the central valley, Jarrett came to Fort Bragg in 1977 on her way to Australia, but she stayed on the coast. Her husband grew up in Ghana and toured the United States as a musician with Hugh Masekela. The two met after he moved from Berkeley to the coast. Their business was an unplanned project to help people in Ghana.

This evening should appeal to anyone interested in cultural, artistic, economic and even geopolitical issues that surround the issues of producing cotton fabrics. There will be examples of the materials produced and time for audience response.

The Gualala Arts Center, located at 46501 Old State Highway in Gualala, CA,
is open weekdays 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., and weekends from noon to 4:00 p.m.
Please call (707) 884-1138 for more information, or email

Serving the coastal communities of northern Sonoma & southern Mendocino Counties.