The British Council’s Crafting Futures global program celebrates the value of artisanship in our history, culture and the current world. Fomenting dialogues in the intersection between the artisanal sector and other disciplines, the initiative brings together artisans, designers, organisations and others from all over the world with the purpose of exploring potential sustainable futures. 

Under this premise, research was carried out in Argentina between 2019 and 2021 to gather the experiences and points of view of participants in the joint processes of creation and knowledge exchange. The survey, created together with REDIT (Federal Inter-University Network for Fashion and Textile Design) and under the advice of India’s Craft Revival Trust, reached more than 570 people. Whenever possible, considering the limitations imposed by the pandemic, in-person meetings and round-table discussions were carried out, which included the contributions of specialists of this sector. The work methodology  and information gathered can be reviewed in the report "Crafting Futures: Exploración del ecosistema artesanal en Argentina '' in https://www.britishcouncil.org.ar/crafting-futures

Through 2021, the research was expanded to include South Asia, thanks to the global reach of the British Council’s Crafting Futures program. UNESCO’s seminal publication, Designers Meet Artisans*, about the lessons learned from the experiences in Colombia and India, was a vital foundation for the development of the project.

  

“Artisan Voices : Dialogues for Sustainable Practices” is centred on the artisans who, as carriers of an ancestral cultural patrimony, keep the knowledge alive and safeguard it by transmitting it from one generation to the next. The stories from Argentina, Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Pakistan and Sri Lanka represent a dialogue that underlines the universal values that are inherent to the intercultural processes that benefit all parties involved.

The publication is structured in two sections. The first one refers to the ethical practices that are essential to the relationship between artisans and the world in general: Respect, Recognition, Consent, Attribution, Shared Benefits, Protection and Active Listening. The second section highlights some aspects of the artisanal ecosystem that have an effect on their practices: Cultural Institutions, Transmission and Education, Tourism, Technology and Co-creation. 

In the current context, marked by social and environmental concerns, the artisan’s voices encourage the development of the type of society that our times demand: more equitable, more sustainable and more respectful of cultural diversity, and more in harmony with our planet.

"Artisans Voices: Dialogues for Sustainable Practices” is dedicated to the artisanal communities of Argentina, Bhutan, Bangladesh, India, Sri Lanka and Pakistan, to the people that engage with them and to all creators around the globe.

*Designers Meet Artisans: A practical guide (2005). Editors: Ritu Sethi, Cecilia Duque, Indrasen Vencatachellum. Published jointly by Craft Revival Trust, Artesanías de Colombia S.A. and UNESCO. This volume was translated by UNESCO into French and Spanish for its distribution around the world.

 

PROJECT TEAM:

British Council 
The British Council is the United Kingdom’s international organisation for cultural relations and educational opportunities. We foster knowledge and understanding between the population of the United Kingdom and other countries. This results in benefits for all, since we transform the lives of the people by creating opportunities, establishing links and generating mutual trust.
Valeria Zamparolo – Director of Arts, British Council Argentina
Verónica Bergna – Arts Projects Manager, British Council Argentina
Katia Stewart – Global Manager of Crafting Futures, British Council United Kingdom

Ritu Sethi - India 
Ritu Sethi is the editor of Global InCH, the online international journal of intangible cultural heritage, and supervisor of Asia InCH, an encyclopaedia on the traditional arts, crafts, and textiles of South Asia. She is a founder-trustee of the Craft Revival Trust, a non-profit organization based on the principle that access to knowledge and its dissemination are the vital nucleus for safeguarding the intangible cultural heritage. She has authored and edited several publications, including “Designers Meet Artisans - A Practical Guide” (translated into Spanish and French). 

Sol Marinucci - Argentina 
Designer, cultural producer and researcher. She participated in the organisation of the biggest design festival of Latin America, TRImarchi. Her experience in fieldwork with indigenous people during the last decade has made her an ideal leader for the coordination of the Crafting Futures program of the British Council in Argentina. She was in charge of guiding the project since the initial diagnosis stage and of creating interdisciplinary teams. She fostered reflections around collaborative creation practices between artisanship and design and defined a vision with a polyphonic approach to start new conversations that include different voices.

REDIT - Argentina 
The Federal Inter-University Network for Fashion and Textile Design - REDIT was created in 2012 with the idea of driving the development of that specialization under a perspective that takes into account the identitarian particularities of each region of the country. In the last years, they have focused on knowledge exchange experiences with artisanal communities applied to the field of textile and fashion design.
Alejandra Mizrahi, artist, teacher and researcher, was the REDIT representative and coordinator for the Crafting Futures Argentina project. She also contributed her wide experience with the group Randeras de El Cercado, with whom she has worked closely in the last years.

REDIT universities
María Lombana and Alejandra Mizrahi. FAU - UNT, National University of Tucumán
Florencia Elena Antonini. IDI - UNNOBA, National University of the Northwest of the Province of Buenos Aires
Beatriz Martínez and Mariela Favero. FAUD - UNMdP, National University of Mar del Plata
Patricia Pieragostini. FADU - UNL, National University of the Litoral
Moriana Abraham. FAUD - UNC, National University of Córdoba
Maria Blanca Iturralde. FAyD - UNaM, National University of Misiones
Maria Alejandra Moreno. FAUD – UNSJ, National University of San Juan

REDIT interns 
Micaela Borlandelli, Franco Chimento, Andrea del Valle Ocón, Julieta Richeri, Juana Luisa Montoya, Melina Suarez Sabatini, Victoria Zaccari and Josefina Zentner.

Territory agents
Pilar Avetta, Lucía Camargo Pablicich, Gina Crespi, Andrea Fernández, Andrea Gatti, Miranda Mayer, Alejandra Mizrahi, Juana Montoya, Natalia Orozco, Milagro Tejerina and Yazmine Zampaca.

Rachel Kelly - United Kingdom 
Responsible for postgraduate textile design programs in the Manchester School of Art. She led the Creating Sustainable Textile Futures for Women project in 2019, as part of the British Council’s Crafting Futures program in the Philippines.

Advisors  
Elvira Espejo - Bolivia
Artisan, visual artist, researcher and director of the National Museum of Ethnography and Folklore in La Paz, Bolivia. 
Deirdre Figueiredo - United Kingdom
Director of Craftspace, a Birmingham based organisation that promotes artisanal development. 
Milagro Tejerina - Argentina
Artisan, professor of the National University of Tucumán and educational and productive projects manager with artisan communities in different regions of the country. 
Bridget Harvey - United Kingdom
Interdisciplinary artist, adviser for design and artisanship projects, researcher, curator and teacher. 

Design
Sofia Noceti Studio

Texts
Andrea Lázaro

Copy editor
Maria Marta Pugliese

Translator
Guadalupe de la Fuente

COLLABORATORS
All the people that participated in the Artisans Voices: Dialogs for Sustainable Practices publication are mentioned below, including the names of the members of the artisan communities and the persons, institutions and organisms that have engaged with them in the creation and knowledge exchange processes.

TINKU KAMAYU / Assembled to Work : Margarita Ramírez, Lorena Ramírez, Rita Gutiérrez, Sonia Aráoz, Silvana Vargas, Maricel Caminos, Yesica Pasallo, Anabel Reinoso, Inés Ramírez, Rosa Cancinos, Andrea Ramírez, Rocío Castro, Francisco Moreno / Siyani / Zangmo / Tejedores Andinos: Celeste Valero, Lucrecia Cruz, Comunidad de Casillas, Irma Cruz, Sabina Cruz, Comunidad de Maimará, Nora Ríos, Comunidad de Yacoraite, Vanesa Cruz, Joana Palacios, Comunidad de Sumalagua, Esperanza de La Quiaca, Bernarda Martínez de la Comunidad de Inti Cancha, Edilberta Puca de la Comunidad de Cusi Cusi / Ministerio de Turismo y Cultura de San Juan / Mercado Artesanal Tradicional Luisa Escudero / Miriam Atencio / Shehnaz Banu / Lucas Mamerto Mamani / Mercado de la Estepa Quimey Piuké: Rosana Perez, Alejandra Córdoba, Lili Fernández, Mónica Castillo, Dominga Juanico, Susana Rivas, Catalina Fernández, Elsa Oses, Paula Antrichipay, Elsa Cañupan, Virginia Antrichipay, Magdalena Porma, Magdalena Méndez, Cintia Quilaleo, Sonia Santiago, Estela Guerrero, Doralisa Toledo, Sandra Malvina Gómez / Sandhya / Ruta del Tejido: Andrea Fiorina Gatti, Elva Díaz, Graciela Rodríguez, Eleonora Aguirre, Paula Cacéres, Gastón Díaz, Emmanuel Díaz, Fausto Fernández, Eliseo Fernández, Amparo Fernández, María José Guzmán, Teresa  Krapovickas, Irma Ponce, Rita Monasterio, Nélida Chávez, Patricia Armella, Luz Eli Hernández Sánchez, Marcelo Monasterio, Carolina Rubio / Mohan Kumar Verma / Margarita Maldonado / Thañí-Viene del monte: Andrea Fernández, Melania Pereyra, Anabel Luna, Marilin Belizani, Aurora Lucas, Ana López, Claudia Alarcón, Edelmira Duarte. Comunidades de La Puntana, el grupo Suwanhas (Hormigas) de la comunidad Choway de Alto La Sierra,  tejedoras de la comunidad La Curvita Nueva / Sonam Wangdi / Lopen Norbu / Randeras de El Cercado: Anice Evangelina Ariza, Juana Margarita Ariza, Margarita del Rosario Ariza, Claudia Noemí Aybar, Elva Rosa Aybar, Gabriela Noemí Belmonte, Tatiana Belmonte, Ofelia Belmonte, Norma Beatriz Briseño, Cristina del Valle Costilla, Mirta Noemí Costilla, Ana Belén Costilla Ariza, Marisel de los Ángeles Costilla, Silvia del Valle González, Dolores Marta Núñez, María Magdalena Núñez, María Marcelina Núñez, Yohana Elizabeth, Pacheco, Giselle María Paz, Romina Elizabeth Paz, Camila Nieva, Silvia Robles, Mayra Alejandra Robles, Agustina del Carmen Sosa, Elva Cristina Sosa, Yohana Torres, Silvina Amado, Silvina González, Malena González, María Laura González, Ana María Toledo / Florencia Vivas / Comunidad Wichí de El Potrillo: Isabel Fernández, Marisela García, Anabel Martínez, Marisela Martínez, Sonia Fernández, Verona Fernández, Ayelén Fernández, Angelina Fernández, Evelin Fernández, Lidia Paz, Juana Fernández, Guillermina Fernández, Orfilia Ibáñez, Dominga Fernández, Rosa Barraza, Carla Martínez, Mirta Tomas, Adolfina Tomas, Johana Pérez, Nery Martínez/ Narmada Devi / Kume Lalen: Cinthia Zaballa Antimán, Giselle Zaballa, Jennifer Zaballa, Patricia Carpio y Samantha Carpio. Other artisans from Los Toldos: Guillermina Luberriaga, Mabel Pilquil, María Ester Ancay, María Antonia Pilquil / Mujeres Esperanza: Gabriela Zambrano, Dayana Chauque, Enilda Chorolque, Eulalia Lunda, Rosa Cruz, Celeste Chauque, Elena Ayarde, Fernanda Zambrano, Griselda Baños, Lola Ramos, Nancy Zerpa, Norma Chorolque, Rosa Chorolque, Yamile Choque / Milagro Tejerina/ Haleema Bibi y Pari Bibi / Sol Marinucci / Elvira Espejo / Martina Mianzan / Craft Revival Trust / Anjali Bhatnagar / Varsha Gupta / Grupo Warmipura: Silvina Reyes, Julia Cruz, Carina Reyes, Karina González, Nélida Gómez, Maira Cruz, Julia Reyes, Crecencia González, Liliana Pastrana / Universidad de Florencia (UNIFI) / Universidad de Morón / Taller de cerámica artesanal de La Guardia: Juliana Frías, Ignacio Bertussi, Adriana Pérez Lindo, Nélida Cutreras, María Luiza Lopategui, Teresa Bastistuti, Claudia Lorenzón, Cristina Lebetto, Roberto Acosta, Marcela Heger, Sonia Piedrabuena, Nélida Rolón / Dwaraka: Bhanu Priya, Mona Kumari / Ruta del Artesano / Apé Gama / Wasantha / Guanaco Estepa / Patricia Dreidemie / Peñi Mapuche / Orembiapo Maepora: Lilia López, Felisa Ruiz, Soledad Ruiz, Claudia Sánchez, Gabriela Orio, Eli López, Vicenta Ovando, Alicia Saravia, Ester López / Florencia Califano / Ngawang Jamba / CIEFAP (Centro de Investigación y Extensión Forestal Andino Patagónico) / Martín Müller / Manuel Rapoport / Martín Sabattini / Designo Patagonia / Gonzalo Villamax / Clara Rosa / Alejandra Mizrahi / Studio Mayasir / Nargis Apa / Anita Reddy / Bhawni Mehrotra / Darshan Mekani Shah / Darshi Keerthisena / Himali Jinadasa / Karma Zangmo / Mahedi Hasan / Mohammad Ahmad / Nivedita Negi / Noorjehan Bilgrami / Pema Chopel / Rinzin O. Dorji / Royal Textile Academy of Bhutan / Shristha Bhandari.

 

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