studio palha serves as a facilitating platform and equity-centred community design practice in which the artisanal hand merges with design.
By curating co-creative and participatory engagements in a rural habitat in Mozambique between artisans and fashion practitioners, Studio Palha amplifies indigenous-led sustainable practices to empower the possibility to design human ecosystems, where craft and design weave together collective wisdom. Studio Palha adopts the role of a design ally together with independent designers seeking to support, uplift and centre the voices of communities and amplifying the makers — the artisans; what drives them, what is inbred in their belief system and how this translates into the natural materials they work with. The deep ecology principles the communities live by demonstrate that Indigenous people are the experts of planetary health.
‘The legacy brought forth through the human hand’ — as sung by the women of Linga Linga.
The artisans’ labour of love reflects an influence of the past and transmits a technical know-how that in turn defines the local identity. The focus is on elevating the craft and design working methods with the freedom and space to experiment and research whilst designing, embracing new social and economic values. The artisans and designers are seen as change-agents who conciliate the traditional and the contemporary. Artisans take the agency in the process of conception, and designers are led to the place of origin of the craft. Skills, practice and life experiences can be openly discussed and performed within human ecosystems of designing and producing, all the while working with natural and regenerative materials.