By Amanda Lensch
UNL Graduate Student
Yesterday we traveled outside of Xi’an to a little village about three hours away (we had no idea it was going to be that far...) to visit women who make textile goods for the tourist market. These women didn’t speak English, but were so hospitable and kind that they made the long ride absolutely worth it!
And then we saw the things they had made…
Anyway, in an effort to keep this brief, I’ll tell you about my favorite lady who prompted the impulse buy. She was our last stop of the day.
Her name is Liaijie, and she is about 80 years old. She has been making things to be sold for so long, and is so good at it that she has received recognition and an award for her work from the Shaanxi Province Ministry of Culture. The award was called the Cultural Heritage Award in honor of her beautiful skill. I’ve included a picture of her holding her award with one of the professors from the local university.
So, because this woman was so adorable and famous for her work, I HAD to have something she'd made! A pair of ducks was my choice, and I think I can find a spot for them in my apartment quite easily. Anyway, I’ve included other pictures of us with Liaijie, and her work.
Amanda Lensch is working on a master’s in textile history with an emphasis in quilt studies at UNL. She has a bachelor’s degree in apparel merchandising, design and production with an emphasis in museum studies and a minor in entrepreneurial studies from Iowa State University. She is a graduate assistant working in collections at the International Quilt Study Center & Museum and previously interned at the National Quilt Museum in Paducah, Ky., and Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History in Washington, D.C.