Katie West: Living well

Muhlu means “cool time” and garwarrn means “hot time” in Yindjibarndi language. During muhlu I work with a hot natural dyeing process, collecting leaves, flowers and bark, to bundle up in fabric, prepared to be placed in a pot of water and left to boil on the fire. During the season there are many fires and many resulting pieces of fabric infused with place, the colour and smell of the country where I have been walking and collecting. The slower process of solar dying happens in garwarrn, when it is too hot to have a fire. Once again leaves, flowers and bark are bundled together, but this time are placed in glass jars of water. The jars are sealed and left in a sunny spot. Over a number of weeks the tannins migrate from plant material to organic fabric fibres.

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