Wednesday, September 9, 2009
Palm Wine Tapper on the way to Ogun Festival:
This batik was done by Ajala's father. Batik, you may or may not know, is a method for making images on cloth by applying some substance resistant to dye in a design, then dyeing the unresisted areas. In this case the resist is wax, and the dye, indigo and other plant pigments. The multiple colors are achieved by re-waxing and over-dyeing. It's a tricky medium, and this piece is a technical wonder.
Ogun is the orisa of iron, and by extension technology and tools of all sorts, and by another extension, the road, cut by tools through the jungle. Palm wine is the fermented sap of a type of palm ~ so a "palm wine tapper" is a person who is an expert at tapping, that is drilling a hole to extract the sap to make the wine with. My friend Greg says that it is a little fizzy, and nice. I'm looking forward to tasting it someday.