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Welcome to the world of Sardinian Arts!

The textiles you find here are museum-quality works of art made with love and care by women who have dedicated their lives to the nearly-lost art of traditional handweaving.

Woven one at a time, on looms powered entirely by hand and foot, these unique textiles are technically precise, astonishingly beautiful, and possess an unquantifiable essence that serves as a portal to something we seek yet may not be able to describe.

This indescribable quality is invisible in a photo, yet the essence and true beauty of a handwoven textile becomes tangible when you hold the weaving in your hands—and even when you see the textile across a room. You feel the anima, the spirit of the weaver, present in every article she weaves.

The soul of the weaver is infused in the textile through the care and loving attention she has for her art. It’s infused from the weaver’s being present in each moment and attentive to the single thought, single task, single person present in that moment.

In each handwoven textile, you feel the radiance of love, of presence, of individual yet intangible spirit brought into tangible form. Beautiful form. This is the magic of fine art.

Each thread of every handwoven textile is manually placed and counted. Each row of every handmade textile is manually woven and compressed. The process is difficult, complicated, physically demanding, and time-intensive. Handweavers must necessarily love their art to weave—and the weaver’s loving attention and spirit goes into each fiber of every textile she creates.

The dedication to the process of handweaving makes a handweaver’s life inseparable from her art. Few persist in the profession of handweaving, and the handful of professional handweavers in Sardinia are generally overlooked in the world of art as well as in the world of commerce.

The artists you’ll meet here are among the few remaining professional handweavers in Sardinia. The textiles they create are museum-quality.

I share my love for these weavers, their art, and Sardinia in general on this site and in my related work. I document, film, write, and talk about the weavers. I help bring textiles into the hands of those who appreciate the weavings and the artists. In short, I serve as a tramite, a conduit to the weavers and to Sardegna.

I’ve come to think of the island as home and the handweavers as family. I frequent the studios and homes of the weavers. I’ve been in the power loom shops and in the textile mills. I know the textile styles typical of different areas of the island. I know when a weaving is handmade and when it’s not, and the appropriate prices and markets for handmade, hand-decorated, and mill-made Sardinian textiles.

I’m personally dedicated to ensuring the nearly-lost art of the Sardinian weavers— traditionally and nearly always women—is maintained in a sustainable manner, that handweavers are respected, and that the weaving and the traditional designs of Sardegna are protected.

If you would like a rug, a table runner, a bag, a bedspread, a textile that brings the invisible essence of the handmade to you, I can help.

I’m happy to help you understand the styles, designs, and options available. I can help you commission a custom textile  and coordinate with an artist to weave it for you—or find you a suitable weaving she may have already in her studio. In rare cases, I may offer you a textile from my own collection. I can even put you directly in touch with a weaver or take you to her studio.

When you purchase a textile from the weavers mentioned here, you bring into your home a work of art carrying the indescribable essence of the handmade. You also support sustainable, fair trade of a nearly lost art—an art maintained by a few strong women determined to preserve their culture and heritage.

Please contact me if you would like to learn more about the textiles or Sardinia!

Also check back regularly, as I am adding information to the site and organizing tours and events.

With love and respect,

~ Kelly Manjula Koza

Showcase

This is a limited showcase of Sardinian textiles, rather than a click-and-buy catalog of items.

Why?

A showcase better supports the weavers, the traditions, and the artwork shared on these pages.

Fine handwoven Sardinian textiles are made one at a time by the hands of weavers who put their heart into each row and fiber of every weaving. This care and attention imparts a tangible energy into each weaving — and it’s this indescribable quality of love that makes the textiles so special, even beyond the museum-quality refinement of the craftsmanship apparent in each.

This essence, this quality is rare in the modern world.

I want to honor this uniqueness in the textiles, in the weavers, in you who seek to increase and cultivate these qualities in your life and your home.

I want to help you find the right textile and offer you a connection to the integral spirit and beauty found in the traditional Sardinian handweavings.

I’ve found that meeting or talking with people one-on-one or in small groups the best way to convey the unique, exquisite nature of the weavings and to ensure the weavers, artwork, and more are honored and protected.

Push-button online ordering breaks the connections. It commoditizes the weavings, annihilates the presence and individuality of the weavers, and turns you into a nameless consumer.

I don’t want to do that. The beautiful handwoven textiles of Sardinia offer a portal to a connection we all seek, and I honor this. It’s part of what I consider fair trade.

You’ll also find that I have not uploaded many photos of the textiles. This is because I’ve found that too many people merely seek to copy Sardinian designs.

If you’re interested in seeing the textiles in person or hosting a screening of my documentary about the weavers , please contact me.  I’ll be happy to talk or email. You can also visit the FAQs page to learn more.

The Artists

Isa Frongia and her studio are the gold standard among a little-known group of artists whose craft is rapidly fading.

A third-generation Sardinian weaver, Isa, along with her mother Susanna and cousin Anna Maria, weave entirely by hand, using traditional methods, looms, and patterns. Their work is truly museum-quality.

Read more here. . . 

To contact Isa, Anna, and Susanna, see this page in English, o vede questa pagina in Italiano.

With their permission, I’ll be adding information soon about hand weavers from other areas of Sardinia, who use different techniques and have very different types of weavings. In the meantime, you can visit the Sardinian Arts Facebook page to find these weavers.

The Film

The documentary I Want to Weave the Weft of Time (Tessere le Trame del Tempo) explores the skills, patience, and artistry of Sardinia’s hand weavers, the tessitori artigianali.

The video features the acclaimed traditional Sardinian handweavers Isa Frongia, her mother Susanna Frongia, and cousin Anna Maria Pirastu, as well as Bruna Cossu, an architect who has returned to Sardinia to reclaim her spirit and learn the art and ways of the tessitori artigianali.

Traditional hand weaving was nearly lost, and for many years has been invisible and unvalued. This art is thriving in the Frongia women’s unique studio, where the women continue to weave by hand in the ancient pibiones tradition. Their art requires great engineering skill, mathematical ability, patience, and physical dexterity. The textiles they create are unparalleled, and a testament to the Frongia’s skill and commitment to preserving this art form.

The trailer is below; the full film (29 minutes) is available on Vimeo.

If you would like to schedule a screening and director’s talk for your school, weaving guild, store, or group, please contact me.

My heartfelt gratitude for the wonderful original musical score goes to composer Ruth Mendelson and the musicians:

  • Lauren Passarelli, Guitar
  • Michael Ripoll Diego, Guitar
  • Miguel Rodriguez, Guitar
  • Shawn Tubbs, Guitar
  • Josquin Des Pres, Bass
  • Tommy Aros, Drums and Percussion
  • Lucy Pope, Violin
  • Beth Welty, Violin
  • David Siegel, Violin
  • Diego Mondrogan, Violin
  • Neo, Vocals
  • Ruth Mendelson, Bass, Guitar, Piano, Keyboards