Artisans from China, Angola, Brazil, Cape Verde, Guinea-Bissau, Mozambique, Portugal, São Tomé and Príncipe and Timor-Leste have been invited to take part in the 9th Handicraft Fair of China and Portuguese-speaking Countries, which takes place at Macau Tower Convention and Entertainment Centre between 11am and 7pm from October 14 to 18.
Internationally-renowned Angolan sculptor João Isabel, will join the craftwork exhibition and give a demonstration at the fair of his skills. He is also a member of the prestigious Cooperative of Artisans (COARTE) of Angola.
Brazilian artisan Márcia Sales Martins is returning to the annual fair this year with work woven from golden grass. The art of weaving with golden grass first came from the Xerente Indians. The fibre of this grass is used in handicraft products including bracelets, earrings, key rings and handbags exclusively in Brazil, and specifically in the region of Jalapão and Tocantins.
Jorge Soares, a potter active at the Mindelo International School of Art, will present at the fair ceramic and pottery works typical of Cape Verde culture.
Two Chinese artisans, Lin Jian and Liang Xiuqun, bring to the fair from the San Po region the art of wheat stalk weaving, a tradition that is of over 400 years old. The artisans will also exhibit examples of perfumed sachets in the form of human figures – filled with Chinese herbs and known as “me mie” – typically used by the Zhuang ethnic group to relieve convulsions of babies, and to bring blessings and ward off evil spirits.
Rosalina da Silva, an artisan from Guinea-Bissau and a founding member of the Bissau Residents’ Associations Network (RAMOB), will also attend the fair. Her works are exhibited at various government buildings in her country, including the hall of the National Assembly.
New uses for the traditional and well-known Mozambique clothing item for women known as the ‘capulana’ are to be presented at the fair by the artisan Gualdina Paz. She transforms this garment into bags, beach bags and towels, backpacks and mobile phone pouches.
Portuguese artisan Armanda Esperança is exhibiting at the fair the famous embroidery of Viana do Castelo, a city in northern Portugal. The works are inspired by embroidery of traditional motifs with elemental, floral and plant themes. The artisan is also bringing to the fair the “valentines’ handkerchief”, a famous embroidery artefact from that city.
An artisan from East Timor, Rosalina da Costa, presents “Tais” fabrics with textures and motifs reflecting traditional arts and images of that country.
African sculptures in precious woods make a return to this year’s edition of the fair, via São Tomé and Príncipe artisan, Alvirio da Trindade. He is also known as the founding artist of the Pé de Bota gallery.
The traditional henna tattoo culture of the Indian sub-continent will also be presented via the Goa, Daman and Diu zones at the fair. A henna tattoo is one of the many traditions that mark religious customs in India and is considered auspicious. Fans of the practice like having the lacy henna pattern to be tattooed on their hands and feet. The craftsman Harichandra Anand Polke will be making henna tattoos for members of the public visiting the fair.
Last but not least, the Macanese artisan Rita Lage will present her works, which are inspired by workshops on fabric painting, creative embroidery and accessory making.
The 9th Cultural Week of China and Portuguese-speaking Countries will run from October 14 to 22, and includes music, gastronomy, theatre, fine arts and handicrafts. The Permanent Secretariat of Macao Forum promotes this annual event, thereby reinforcing Macao’s platform role as an exchange and cultural meeting place between China and Portuguese-speaking Countries and assisting the city’s promotion of an initiative known as the “Cultural Belt and Road”.