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The above picture is a good example of a traditional uwene from the community of Tuapurie, where the chairs are made with a more elaborate back. The uwene, often referred to as a shaman's chair, is sturdy and can last generations if it is well made from the proper materials and not abused. The preferred wood for the frame of the chair is brazil wood, ützate, used in combination with mature bamboo, hakute. The woven bamboo seat is attached using thin strips of bamboo that are twisted together and then tied with leather cord. The back is made from lengths bamboo that have been stripped of the bark so it can be bent without breaking.

Two different native plants are separately ground, burned, and then combined with the ashes to make a sticky substance, called kuetsukuai, that is used to reinforce the chair and afix the decorative back. These two plants must be harvested when they are mature or they will not produce a strong enough adhesive.

Photograph ©1981 Juan Negrín

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