Awards 1991 CWDE* Award for Effective Communication

CWDE* Award for Effective Communication

Tumi

*Worldaware was formerly known as the Centre for World Development Education (CWDE)

Tumi, which sells Latin American handicrafts in four shops and supplies 500 others, has always been keen to promote the continent and its culture.

Mo Fini of Tumi brought the Bolivian group Rumillajta to Britain in l984 to sing at the Edinburgh Festival and the Welsh eisteddfod. He had their music recorded on the Tumi label which has now extended its range from the pipes and flutes of the Andes to the salsa rhythms of Colombia.

The following year he brought two Peruvian weavers for an exhibition at the Commonwealth Institute entitled The Weavers of Ancient Peru; and he wrote and published a colourfully illustrated book with the same name. He continues to organise exhibitions on Latin American themes in Tumi's own shops and other venues. His many black-and-white photographs are collected in a touring exhibition, Portrait of Latin America. This opened last February at the Royal Photographic Society in Bath and will tour to London, Devon, Liverpool and Southampton in 1992. Rather than the poverty and violence of Latin America, it shows the hope, laughter and strength of the people. The photographs are also published in a book with the same title, in which Mo Fini writes of his adventures and encounters.

A comprehensive book on Latin American handicrafts is now being produced. This will use the vast range of colour images taken by Mo Fini over the years, plus new black-and-white photographs. It will present to a wider audience the knowledge gleaned from so many visits.

Exhibitions planned for l992 include the Pre- Hispanic Gods of Mexico, Textiles from Guatemala and Erotic Art in pre-Hispanic Peru and Mexico. Holding these exhibitions in the Tumi galleries gives customers a deeper insight into the handicrafts and their cultural background.

Last year came the first issue of an annual Tumi Magazine, with articles on the tumi knives of Peru, on the Ecuadorians who make balsawood parrots, on an old man still using the Incas' accounting system, and on the music of the Andes, illustrated with Mo Fini's photographs.

The second issue of the magazine is being printed in both English and Spanish. The Spanish version will be given free of charge to craftspeople in Latin America. It aims not only to increase awareness of Latin American cultural issues in the West but also to unite and increase communication among the craftspeople.

For education, Tumi has been filming short videos featuring Latin American craftsmen, customs and festivities since l986. Mo Fini directs, edits and produces them with Lucy Davies, Tumi's full-time educational and cultural officer. The most recent features the Day of the Dead festival in Mexico and is being shown in the London shop as part of a major Day of the Dead exhibition.

For l992 two documentary films of broadcasting standard are being planned, featuring isolated communities in Peru. They aim to show the strength of these communities and their independence from the outside world.

All the videos can be hired by schools and colleges at a nominal rate. Teachers often hire them with school packs containing Tumi handicrafts and background information about the people who make them and the countries they live in. The education department also tries where possible to meet teachers' individual requests. These maybe for other handicrafts or for interviews, slide shows or lectures.