School of Design

ULITA – an Archive of International Textiles

Yoruba Textiles

Yoruba_textilesCloth and Tradition in West Africa

The Yoruba of south western Nigeria are amongst the most prolific art making people of Africa. A major aspect of their creative culture is the design, production and use of textiles. Yoruba textile creativity has developed through a number of different technical processes and shows remarkable adaptability through time. Prolific weaving traditions are complemented by innovative dyeing and printing conventions. Through time these traditions have developed to incorporate modern materials such as Lurex, and today narrow strip loom cloth remains the material of Yoruba prestige clothing in Nigeria and its diaspora.

This exhibition traces the development of the indigenous indigo dyeing Adire tradition as well as the relations between local and imported textiles. Based on items from the ULITA Collection and significant private collections, the exhibition coincides with the African Studies Association UK Conference.

The exhibition panel text is available to view.

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