Morongo Band of Mission Indians to Host California Indian Basketweavers Association Event

The Morongo Band of Mission Indians plan to host a 24th annual California Indian Basketweavers Association gathering June 27 to June 29 at the Morongo Community Center on Malki Road, a tribal spokesman announced Tuesday.
 
The gathering "will be open to the public for a day of basket weaving classes taught by master weavers" on Saturday June 28, according to organizers. The public event will include a special showcase display of traditional baskets created by CIBA
members over the past year.
 
"Morongo is honored to be hosting this year's CIBA gathering and to be supporting efforts to not only preserve traditional basket weaving techniques but to pass these important cultural practices on to future generations," Morongo Tribal Chairman Robert Martin said. "California Indian basket weaving links us to our past and to those who have gone before, and the unique beauty of each basket tells its own story."
 
The first California Indian Basketweavers Association gathering was held in 1991 by a handful of weavers who feared California Indian basketry traditions and practices were threatened with extinction, a tribal spokesman said.
 
At the time, basket weavers were few in numbers and several were the only remaining weavers from their tribal regions.
 
Here's more from the Morongo Band of Mission Indians announcement:
 
Today, CIBA has more than 900 members who study and teach traditional California Indian basketry techniques. CIBA's goal is to preserve, promote, and perpetuate traditional basket weaving by California Indians, who are considered to be the best basket weavers in the world.
 
"We are carrying on a long tradition and want to support this wonderful expression of a useful way to beautify everyday life by sponsoring this gathering in our area," said Suzann Holman, a CIBA and Morongo tribal member.
 
At the Gathering, weavers demonstrate and sell their work, share techniques and stories and explore regional basketry weaving styles. The event is also intended to help raise awareness among Native Americans, the public, the arts community and educators about the beauty and significance of California Indian basket weaving.
 
"Basket weaving is more than an art from; it is the very essence of who we are as California Indians," said Clint McKay, chairman of CIBA. "We would like to thank the Morongo Band of Mission Indians for graciously hosting our annual gathering and for their support in helping CIBA continue its work to preserve this most important of cultural traditions."
 
 
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By: Guy McCarthy
January 28, 2014