YDL Hosts National Kente Cloth Exhibit

Monday, March 16, 2009

The Ypsilanti District Library presents Wrapped In Pride: Ghanaian Kente and African American Identity from March 25 to April 30, 2009 at YDL-Whittaker Road. Historically, kente—the cloth of many strips and colors—was the cloth of kings. Its roots lie in Africa with the Asante and Ewe people of Ghana and Togo. Wrapped in Pride explores the history of traditional Ghanaian weaving and its impact on cultures beyond Africa's shores.

This free museum-quality exhibit features a market stall, a loom, and many samples of cloth, some available to touch. Local school groups are encouraged to make an appointment for a class visit where young people will have the opportunity to do a “gallery walk” learning more about weaving, celebrations, and how kente cloth is made, named, and sold. Families are welcome to participate in the gallery walk exercises as well.

To augment the information and experience presented by Wrapped in Pride, the Ypsilanti District Library will present additional programs at YDL-Whittaker Road throughout the time the exhibit is in residence. All programs are free and open to the public.


  • Creative Weaving: Techniques, Patterns, and Traditions

Try the craft of weaving. You’ll make a simple cardboard loom and use yarn, raffia, beads and other materials to create a beautifully unique weaving. (April 4, 11 am and 2 pm; April 18, 11 am)

  • Design Your Own Kente Cloth

Design a pattern of your own on a computer, then print it out and take it home! A great parent/child activity. (April 5, 1-4 pm and April 27, 5-8 pm)

  • The Weaving and Wearing of Cloth for Kings

Learn about the production of Kente cloth and its wearing by Ghanaian kings and their family members. (April 21, 7-8 pm)


For more information about the exhibit at YDL or the locations for these programs see the Wrapped in Pride page.

YDL-Whittaker is open 9 am to 9 pm Monday through Thursday, 10 am to 6 pm Friday and Saturday, and 1 pm to 5 pm on Sunday. Visit the exhibit any time the library is open. If you have any questions, feel free to call 482-4110 ext. 1303.

This traveling exhibit has been made possible through NEH on the Road, a special initiative of the National Endowment for the Humanities. It is brought to you by Mid-America Arts Alliance. This version of the exhibition was developed by the UCLA Fowler Museum of Cultural History, Los Angeles, California. The Friends of the Ypsilanti District Library provided financial support to bring the exhibition to Ypsilanti.

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