I am researching material for an article about African fashion and design - and its relation to expressing identity and individuality rooting in a collective culture - and I am again reading this article 'The Curious History of African Prints' - about where African prints came from. Now, I stumbled over this:
'But there was a problem: The machine-made version of these cloths developed a crackling effect—a series of small lines, dots, and imperfections where the resin cracked and dye seeped through—that didn’t appeal to Indonesian batik purists. In need of a market for the new textiles, the Dutch turned to West Africa. As it turned out, West Africans were actually partial to these imperfections: They appreciated the fact that no two bolts of cloth were identical.'
It is the imperfections which makes us stand out. It takes courage though to pick imperfection over perfection - doesn't it?
It could also be said in an entirely different way like a journalist once did when he reviewed the South African band eVoid like this:
'...to flow like the untainted waters of a languishing African river in no hurry to find the ocean, where you will only merge with many other rivers and lose your distinct and evocative individuality'.