Chin Traditional Weaving to be Filmed in Burma
10 February 2012: The Yangon Film School (YFS) is set to start shooting a documentary film on the process of Chin traditional weaving in the middle of this month in Burma.
The film, which will be funded by the National Geographic Society (NGS) will document the factual record of weaving techniques used by Sonetu and Laytu, Chin tribes in Rakhine State.
Mai Ni Ni Aung, who founded the Sonetu Loom Weaving Project, told the Myanmar Times that the young Chin generation would be able to learn the Chin traditional weaving technique from the documentary film even after the old Chin women are no longer alive.
She also said she began collecting a record of Sonetu Chin history and customs since 2002 as they are gradually vanishing.
The Sonetu organization works directly with different Chin ethnic group members to preserve a living cultural identity, believing that by providing economic opportunities and encouraging self-employment, the quality of life of both Sonetu individuals and the entire Chin community will benefit, according to the website.
Sonetu, which is also spelt as Sunghtu and literally means ‘people living at the mouth of the river’, is a Chin sub-tribe living in over 50 villages in southern parts of Rakhine State, Burma.
Currently employing about 80 women, the Sonetu Loom Weaving Project has got its works being displayed at Sharky’s Restaurant in Kamaryut Township, Rangoon until the end of this month.
The Yangon Film School (YFS), founded by Anglo-Burmese filmmaker Lindsey Merrison in 2005, is a Berlin-based non-profit organisation that was created in order to support and encourage a burgeoning community of young media workers in Burma.
Reporting by Thawng Zel Thang