Threads of Life Logo
Indonesian Textile Arts   |   What We Do   |   Ubud Gallery   |   Online Store   |   Get Involved

This is mostly the Ubud Writers and Readers Festival issue of our newsletter, as we preview an exhibit, a panel discussion and a lecture Threads of Life suffering as part of the festival.

In a new Field Note, Jean contemplates the renewed life of the Balinese rangrang textile in popular Indonesian culture. Fittingly, a rangrang also becomes the textile of the month.
Field Notes

In 2002, when Jean discovered a headscarf in a basket of textiles in an old woman's house, on the small Balinese island of Nusa Penida, she had no idea what she was starting. She says, "After a more careful look I saw the scrap was a lovely slit-tapestry-woven cloth that they called rangrang, which literally means 'open' or 'with holes'." Since asking weavers on Nusa Penida to make rangrang again, the cloth has become an ethno-chic hit across the archipelago, with some interesting unintended consequences.
Threads of Life at 
the Ubud Writers and Readers Festival

Vessels of Becoming 
at the Threads of Life Gallery

FREE Opening, Monday 26 October, 6:00 pm
Exhibit runs to 8 November

Through textiles, text and imagery, this special retail exhibit for the Festival explores how traditional culture is always evolving, the process being a function of both resistance and innovation. For subsistence agricultural communities, cleaving to the precedents of the past has been a matter of survival, where changing what works can be life threatening. For individuals within these communities, influences from a globalized world have inspired social, economic and political change. As keepers of tradition, the archipelago's indigenous weavers embrace both these forces. They seek to express their devotion to their customs and ancestors while adapting to a rapidly changing world. The textiles on exhibit are vessels for both these potentials, standing firmly in what has been while symbolizing, through being offered to the world, all that their makers hope for their families and communities.

Panel Discussion
Storytelling & Sustainability in Cloth
Friday 30 October, 11:45 am - 1:00 pm
at Joglo, Taman Baca, Jalan Raya Sanggingan
for festival participants only

William Ingram, Threads of Life
Lucy Siegle, columnist at The Guardian
Diana Greentree (Moderator)

William Ingram and Lucy Siegle will present a lively discussion exploring the intersection of their fields of work. Talk will touch on sustainable use of natural dyes, incomes and exploitation in the garment industry, culture and tradition in the global market and indigenous societies, and the future of both.

Lucy Siegle is a writer, broadcaster and well-known speaker with a passion for sustainable fashion. She co-founded the Green Carpet Challenge with friend Livia Firth, wrote  To Die For: is fashion wearing out the world?  and most recently appeared in and exec-produced  The True Cost , a documentary uncovering the truth about today's fast and furious fashion industry.

Tutut, Jean and William in Flores documenting dye plant supplies

FREE Lecture by William Ingram
Stories in Cloth: 
how Indonesia's textile traditions convey meaning
Saturday 31 October,  4:00 - 5:00 pm
at Uma Ubud Hotel

In a dynamic presentation illustrated with contemporary indigenous textiles from around Indonesia, William Ingram examines the history and traditional uses of textiles in Indonesia. Spice trade influences juxtapose with indigenous motifs throughout the archipelago: echoes of Indian trade cloths abound; imagery relates to defining aspects of the local environment; 4000 years of history and genealogy entwine. Uses range from traditional dress, to offerings, to the paraphernalia of marriages and funerals. This talk is a colourful exploration of the archipelago's woven symbology. 

Textile of the Month

Rangrang, 2013
Nusa Penida, Bali
Commercial cotton, Natural dyes, Tapestry weave
82 x 206 cm
Dyed by I Gede Ngurah Hendrawan 
Woven by Ni Wayan Seruti

Best wishes,

W illiam, Jean, Pung and everyone 
at Threads of Life and the Bebali Foundation
Join us online

Coming up: Threads of Life at Ubud Writers & Readers Festival

UWRF Arts Program | Stories in Cloth: How Indonesia's Textile Traditions Convey Meaning

Held annually in Ubud, the Ubud Writers & Readers Festival has become Southeast Asia's largest and most renowned cultural and literary event.

The next Festival will be held 
October 28 - November 1, 2015, and will celebrate the theme 17,000 Islands of Imagination.

A daily dose of Threads of Life on Instagram

Threads of Life on Instagram

We share lots and lots of stories and images from our field work. Follow along, you can find us under  @threadsoflifebali.
Umajati Retreat

"Umajati is an experience we will cherish forever."
--TripAdvisor, 2015
S urrounded by tranquil rice fie lds,  Umajati is a lush garden property hosting two elegantly converted 100-year-old Javanese teak wooden homes that provide 21st century living in 19th century houses. Umajati is just 10 minutes north of Ubud and offers daily, weekly or monthly rentals.
  • 1-bedroom house: 
    USD 190* p/night 
  • 2-bedroom house: 
    USD 245* p/night 
*10% discount for direct bookings: