IKTT (Institute for Khmer Traditional Textiles), from SiemReap Cambodia
IKTT (Institute for Khmer Traditional Textiles), from SiemReap Cambodia

Technical skill transfer and ...

Technical skill 1

Technical skill transfer, this is inseparable from the bringing up of talented people.
IKTT has been pouring their huge power to train the young trainees. But it is presumptuous to say "bringing up" so it might be more correct that they have worked together with them, it is "on the job training", the trainees were following to the instruction of the elderly skillful women of the village.

The skills are not only about textiles but also about silkworm raising and cotton growing, spinning, it is a complication of all various dyeing and weaving skills for making up the textiles from raw materials. The skills have been handing down traditionally among Cambodian people. The skills have been maintained by the people who have been handing down the skills although slightly interrupted during the war.

In my eyes, such elderly village women are of course excellent professional. The skills that the women spin a thread from cotton so easily are extraordinary difficult and hard. Such skillful elderly men and women are very important and the most important thing is that they can earn the money by having and using the skills. That is professional.
So trainees learn to the professional works.

They are professional, so they always make the best clothes. IKTT's purpose comes into this one point. Therefore all the three generations 15 years old to 70 years old get together to make it. They all have been thinking to make up the best splashed pattern textiles in the world. They don't mind any efforts or ordeals to reach for the purpose.

One of the trainee groups called "OEKAKI-GUMI" (the writing graffiti group) learns art at IKTT. They put their future purpose on brushing up their sense of beauty and creating the more wonderful art and textiles. I think it is acceptable to expect that lady artists representing future Cambodia will come out from the group. That is one of our dreams, too.

But basically it is important to produce salable clothes. I tell the trainees and even the elderly women not to produce unsalable clothes. It is important to make such clothes that people want to take and touch in their hand and put the clothes on. I think the purpose of IKTT is to develop such skills and the minds, and transfer the skills.

Morimoto Kikuo
Translation by Mr.Takurou MATSUOKA

Technical skill 2

update : August 14, 2007 10:17 AM

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