Florence Jaukae Kamel, Managing Director of Jaukae Bilum Products, is a well-respected bilum artist and founder of the Bilum Festival.
She has been at the forefront of the rapidly growing reinterpretation of the twist and loop technique into a contemporary art form – billum-wear.
During Maketi Ples 2011, bilum-wear exhibited and created by Florence was recognised as an important statement of gender empowerment by the Australian Museum and was acquired by the museum for its Pacific Collections.
Florence believes, "Our men must acknowledge that the twisting and looping of bilum and the selling of bilums at the local market contributes to the family budget. Income supplementation through selling bilum is the reality of many women in PNG. It is our collective goal to make the Bilum Festival accessible to and visited by national and international visitors. The Bilum Festival provides another opportunity for bilum makers to expand the buying market of a truly unique product"
Bilum-wear created by Florence also features in the Gallery of Modern Art Exhibition Threads Contemporary Textiles and the Social Fabric; another milestone acquisition by an Australian institution.
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