Kente as a universal African symbol


Kente cloth is becoming iconic.

In the movie Black Panther Kente cloth was symbolic of T’challa and his royal family as role the King of Wakanda. But the appearance of Kente cloth in the film was just a reflection of how Hollywood is catching up with the pervasiveness of Kente in African and African-American culture. Folks are using Kente cloth or Kente design patterns in everything from T-shirts to caps to bathing suits. Just look around and you’ll Kente patterns on all kinds of things – belts, scarfs, armbands, necklaces, headbands and head-wraps. Here is a sampling of a variety images I’ve found around the Internet. A lot of these images are prints – they aren’t true Kente cloth woven fabric. I’m not angry or upset at these people, but I’m just pointing out that people are taking the Kente design and making prints which is different from the woven cloth. But it seems that Kente was destined to become universal and iconic in this global digital village we live in. It symbolizes something more than just the Ashanti culture and region where I grew up in Ghana.

We are organizing Kente cloth workshops and we would love to bring one to a city near you! You can have an authentic experience with a Kente loom and having your own mind-body connection with creating this wonderful fabric and its designs and symbolism. Learn about this history and heritage of Kente. If you would like to organize a Kente cloth workshop for your church, school or community organization, please contact Kwasi Asare at: 202-569-5153.


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