Survivors: Borais Humanities Association

By Devang Singh Bhadauria | Kufukaa blogger

When Typhoon Morakot unleashed merciless mudslides shadowing multiple regions of Taiwan in 1988, any hopes of rebuilding the economic pillars ceased to exist. It was unfortunate, and as time passed, the aftershocks kept lingering on the residents like a thundercloud. Any future they held slipped away from unforeseen cracks and left the people with only a sliver of hope, art, the passion for which remained as strong as it was before.

Borais Humanities Association becomes that light at the end of the tunnel, one that kept the dreams of the local artists alive. From promoting post-disaster reconstruction to talent and industrial development, it rekindled the concept of “harmony with the land”. Its community workshops would not only bring the women and youth of the place together, but it weaved them with skills such as mainly producing pottery art, plant dyeing, kiln baking bread and other industries. Mr. Li Huaijin, a local pottery artist, helped resume the pottery culture by establishing a close relationship between pottery and nature. Then, through the kiln burning of the gas kiln, the salt glaze burning, wood burning, etc., the magic of the flame is transformed into a ceramic with an aesthetic and temperature. Serves delicious food in aesthetically appealing utensils boosted the economy of the makes, as well as of traders and merchants who supplied the materials. Similarly, many other businesses, such as dyeing, launched themselves into the new moving stream of community inspired artistry. At present, the Taipa Foot Workshop consists of women and youth in the local community. It mainly produces pottery, plant dyeing, kiln toast and holds a study tour experience. You can see the Baolai pottery, the Japanese-made dyeing, the earth kiln fat and the experience of the experience in the Taipa Foot Culture Shared Space Mall.

The sustainable efforts of such art and artists in Taiwan focused on UN’s 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) 1, 3, 8, 12, 15 (Poverty eradication, health and well-being, employment and economic growth, responsible consumption and production, terrestrial ecology), and was awarded in 105 years. The National Council for Sustainable Development of the Executive Yuan was honored with the National Sustainable Development Award and the Civil Society. These values manifested themselves into the heart of Taiwanese artists in a way that their core refuses them to do anything but what’s good for the people, and the places where they live. Extracting the majestic color of different flowers to paint fabric clothing or weaving twigs of classic plantations to create vessels of utility, every dimension of their hand-made creations is appreciated for its integrity to not harm the planet that we lovingly call home.

We, at Kufukaa, are inspired by such stories of revolution and thrive, mesmerized by the experiences of artists who refused to leave their craft behind even in situations of disaster. Promising a platform of support to people like Mr. Li Huaijin, our products are physical, objects of pure perfection but their history and voice as fluid with emotions and feelings of passion, struggle, hope and artists who think of the earth and its people before thinking about themselves.

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