Monday, April 30, 2012
Catching a dream
For the next craft club – we are going to try our hand at making dreamcatchers. They are deceptively easy to make and look fantastic strung up.
Apart from the aesthetic magnificence of a dreamcatcher, this woven talisman has a noble metaphysical purpose – it catches your bad dreams, traps it its web and then only filters through the pleasant ones. The pleasant dreams slip down the fluffy feathers into the sleeper’s restful mind.
A cultural vestige of the Ojibwa Native American Tribal Nation of North America, the dream catcher gained enormous commercial popularity as an ubiquitous pop-symbol in the 60’s and 70’s as it came to be adopted by New Age Groups and the Hippy-movement. Most Pan-Indian Tribal groups consider this to be an offensive misappropriation of sacred culture.
As we reflect on this – I have a few questions I would like you to consider – what do you think? Who controls culture? Are items that associated with certain cultural traditions the property and control of the custodians of the originating culture? When does a lifestyle something become “culture”, what begins culture and who has the right to control who or what adopts it. When does something shift from being iconic to sacred? For instance are blue denims, white stars and red stripes the property of the American sacred culture? Should it be that the reverence afforded to it become perverted by commercial pop-culturalisation, would Americans have a right to claim authority and/or injustice based on the fact that these symbols both originated in that particular form and are an integral part of the sacred culture of America. Is culture itself inherently sacred and incontrovertible?
What you are going to need to bring is:
1. A thin bangle
2. a few beads
3. a few feathers (if you want to make it look really authentic)
4. some crochet cotton (enough to weave-fill the the area inside of the bangle)
5. some thin cloth or silk ribbon [NOTE: not the plastic kind or curling gift wrapping ribbon. You need proper cloth ribbon, the kind that you get from a fabric store for clothes]. You need enough to wind around the entire diameter of the bangle twice.
6. a needle (that has an eye big enough to thread your crochet cotton)
7. a pair of sharp scissors
Here is the little dreamcatcher I just made:
Well, what do you think? Are you up for the challenge? I hope you are! See you at the next craft club.