South Africa, Angeline Bonisiwe Masuku, Basket Weaving
Angeline Bonisiwe Masuku was destined to be a Zulu basket weaver.
Angeline started weaving when she was 8 years old in 1975, taught by her aunt Kwawulina Gwcensa. Her interest in weaving was supplemented by her exposure to Zulu craft traditions being taught as part of the African school curriculum in the early 1970's .
This was during the revival of Zulu basket weaving as a craft, which had previously showed signs of dying out. The revival was brought about largely by the initiatives of individuals in African school education and by missionaries whose quest was to create livelihood opportunities for rural indigenous populations, as well as giving pride back to the people in showing deference to tradition.
It is from these two sources that she learnt her craft. From preparing IIlala palm in order to weave, to sourcing natural dyes from plants, trees and berries, and finally in the tying of knots, which requires their own mathematical discipline. In her formative years she acquired the technical skills to enable the practice of an art form and solidified the foundation for her basket weaving career.
Angeline Bonisiwe Masuku was featured in Selvedge Magazine Issue 101, Grow.