"Working here has given me knowledge and multiple fields of exploration.

Fatou Sidibé, winner of the 2021 Savoir-faire en transmission awards, did her internship in the WHOLE vegetable dyeing workshop, created by Aurélia Wolff.

After studying applied arts, then learning plastic art in Canada for a year and after obtaining a DMA in textiles with a weaving option, Fatou left for a few months to explore the specific know-how of certain African countries, particularly the bogolan technique in Burkina Faso.

When she returned to France prematurely due to Covid-19, wondering about her professional development, Fatou learnt about the Savoir-faire en transmission awards and began to approach textile finishing workshops, in particular Aurélia Wolff's WHOLE workshop, where they fell in love with each other and began working together.

She started her internship with research on weaving, dyeing and colouring for the creation of furoshiki, then for the production of cushions to be marketed, and collaborations with brands. She participated in the creation of a natural dye kit for Galeries Lafayette. Later, Fatou carried out a research project based on the Anni and Joseph Albers exhibition, which took place at the Musée d'Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris in 2021 and which inspired her greatly.

Fatou Sidibé © Mame Bousso
Fatou Sidibé © Mame Bousso

Her internship allowed her to explore different techniques: mordanting, dyeing with plants from the workshop's garden (gaude, avocado, madder, cachou, indigo...) as well as eco printing.

Eco print - Fatou Sidibé © Mame Bousso
Eco print - Fatou Sidibé and Mathilde Coin © Mame Bousso

"Since I've been here, I don't see plants in the same way: they have a strong dyeing capacity that we need to bring back to life.

Fatou Sidibé
WHOLE workshop © Mame Bousso

To complete her internship, Fatou joined Aurelia Wolff in Reunion Island to carry out research on local plants.

"We used this time together to :

  • make textile samples for a dyeing project in collaboration with a nice local shop;
  • set up a large indigo vat and start a large production for this shop;
  • to make a series of eco prints with local plants on woolen stoles and the shooting of these stoles; 
  • to produce textile charters on local dye plant mordants; 
  • to convert the samples made in medium format in Paris into large format weaving: 6 metres of warp have been threaded and are being woven. - Aurélia Wolff and Fatou Sidibé
Fatou Sidibé and Aurélia Wolff in Réunion © Aurélia Wolf
Fatou Sidibé and Aurélia Wolff in Réunion © Aurélia Wolf

This course will have taken place under the sign of a complementary transmission of the knowledge of each, between weaving and dyeing. 

"This sharing helped me gain confidence in my weaving skills and knowledge of vegetable dyeing."  

Fatou Sidibé  

Following her internship, Fatou would like to continue her quest for local know-how in other parts of the world and learn different techniques from craftsmen, accompanied by her folding loom. She will also be in residence in Canada for one and a half months in 2022.