The African Threads Exhibition
African textiles are used in many traditional ceremonies and dances. Their colour is often of significance and is representative of specific qualities and attributes of the persons wearing them. African textiles also have significance as historical documents, offering perspectives in cases where written historical accounts are unavailable.
Almost all the textiles displayed were woven with local products like cotton and Raphia, on traditional looms, using traditional techniques. Only few of them come from other parts of the world, like Asia and Europe, and have been imported in recent years in Africa to make dresses, both modern and traditional.
About the Ricoveri collection of African art
The textiles exhibited were collected by Marcello and Maria Cristina Ricoveri over the last forty years in the many African Countries where Marcello Ricoveri was posted as an Italian diplomat. They come mainly from Western Africa, the Great Lakes Region and the Horn of Africa and represent excellent examples of the traditional African art of weaving.