Bogolanfini, The British Museum
One of the best-known types of textile from Africa, along with the Kente, is the bogolanfini, the cloth of the Bamana people from Mali in West Africa. This distinctive fabric features variety of wavy lines, circles, chevrons, spots and other geometric figures in white on a black background. But this is not the only thing that makes this textile so unique and interesting. Bogolanfini translates from the Bamana as "mud cloth" and indeed, the main and most important element of the bogolan cloth's production process is mud. But it's not any ordinary mud you can find around the corner. The mud used for bogolanfini making is collected from the very deepest sections of the ponds which become exposed for a few months at the height of the dry season. This mud then is left in a covered pot for about a year, during which time it darkens.