The far northern region of California (Humboldt and Siskoyou Counties) is the homeland of the Hupa and Karuk tribes, who have been vigilant in sustaining cultural practices related to a mode of life to which the Klamath tributary is central. Ritual and ceremony of renewal continue to be integrated in…
Domitilia Clemente was born and raised in the small town of Ocumichu, Michoacán, Mexico.  As a child, she began helping her mother in the kitchen, preparing numerous traditional dishes to celebrate special occasions such as the celebrations of saints (Fiesta de San Pedro, Cristo Rey, Virgen de Guadalupe), as well…
Hayashi is a traditional Japanese percussion ensemble.  Originating in Noh theater in the 14th century, hayashi also plays an important part in Kabuki theater.  The core hayashi instruments are the kotsuzumi (a shoulder drum that produces low sounds), the okawa (a hand drum that makes very high sounds), and the…
Nastaliq is the most popular calligraphy style in the Persian-speaking world.  Nastaliq is mainly used to write Persian poetry, which alongside calligraphy occupies a significant place in the everyday life of Iranians.  Since the ancient foundation of Islam, calligraphy has been the dominant and emblematic feature of Islamic art.  The…
The lion dance is an important tradition to China.  Usually the dance is part of festivities like Chinese New Year, weddings, funerals, cultural celebrations, and other community gatherings.  Dating back to the Han Dynasty (3rd century), it was further developed during the Tang Dynasty (716-907 AD) and into its modern…
Odissi is the oldest of the eight classical dance forms of India, dating back to the 1st century BCE.  A devotional dance typically performed by temple dancers in the east Indian state of Odisha, Odissi was suppressed under British rule (the colonial rulers considered it immoral).  It was revived in…
While there are many styles of Balkan Romani (“Gypsy”) women’s dance, perhaps the most popular, uniquely Romani dance is the kyuchek.  Of Turkish origin, kyuchek can be danced either as a communal line dance with synchronized steps or as a solo improvisation.  Line dances tend to have more contained repetitive…
Bertha Mitchell, a master basket weaver, Patwin language speaker, and culture bearer for the Patwin people, has been weaving baskets for over seven decades.  In addition to working within her own community, Bertha has shared her art with many audiences throughout Northern California, including demonstrating her art form at museums,…
Carnatic music is an ancient tradition of South Indian classical music that dates back for centuries.  It is a complex system of music that requires both artistic and technical improvisation.  The use of the violin for Carnatic music, both as an accompanying and solo instrument, was introduced in the 1700’s. …
Bharatanatyam is a classical Indian dance form originating in the South Indian temple dance tradition, which combines the arts of the stage, music, poetry, costuming, and rhythm.  Bharatanatyam is characterized by graceful movements, intricate footwork, sculpturesque poses, and deep dramatic elements which require years of rigorous training to perfect. An…