You might not expect it, but in Seattle, we have a pretty healthy helping of art and culture from Africa. I love it when I happen upon some new treasure that celebrates African creativity and such is the case with local shop, TASWIRA.
TASWIRA, which stands for Transformative Action for Sustainable Women’s Initiatives & Resources in Africa, opened as a pop-up shop recently in Pioneer Square and is a non-profit African Art and Design organization.
All products are sustainably sourced and handwoven, featuring streetwear, baskets, and home accessories produced by the Bamburi Women’s Empowerment Center in Mombasa, Kenya. Products also include artifacts inspired by the Maasai Tribe.
Originally from Chicago with Nigerian heritage, 22-year-old self-taught entrepreneur Avery Barnes, who also serves as President and Creative Director, founded TASWARI. Inspired by her volunteer work with women in the village of Bamburi in Mombasa, Kenya, she is dedicating a percentage of the proceeds from TASWARI toward educating and providing aid back to the efforts taking place in the empowerment center.
TASWIRA's Pioneer Square location is part of Seattle Restored, a City program that supports pop-ups for creative ventures. TASWIRA is set to be in place at least until November 2022. If you do miss it, you can purchase a few select items on their website, but the pop-up store at 510 Occidental Avenue South in Seattle offers so much more. So waste no time and check it out soon!