Watercolor sketches of indigo-dyed textiles by ethnic minorities in the Yunnan Nationalities Museum, Kunming, China. The sketches were made by Jenny Balfour-Paul in 2000, when she attended a UNESCO conference in China on safeguarding the intangible heritage of the Miao ethnic minorities.

Opening Lecture, Indigo and the Orient: A Story of Blues

Jenny Balfour-Paul
Thursday, September 26, 2019, 5:30 pm

Indigo, known as the “King of Dyes,” has been in continuous use for millennia, employed by different cultures and traded worldwide as blue dye, paint pigment, and medicine. Its versatile qualities make it uniquely suited for all types of textiles, including prestige silks, daily and ceremonial clothing, and blue jeans. In this richly illustrated talk, Dr. Jenny Balfour-Paul, artist, traveler, and author of three books on indigo, speaks about this fascinating dyestuff, focusing on its past and present use in Asia, particularly among the ethnic minorities of Southwest China. Presented in conjunction with the exhibition Ceremonial Dress from Southwest China: The Ann B. Goodman Collection. Generously sponsored by the Martin A. Ryerson Lectureship Fund.

Open to: 
General Public