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Local Traders Open For Business

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4 n tí Sí 1 r ", fc. T SS the past few years. Ann Arboi young Á iriation witli its culturally ing uiste lus become increasingly attractive to persons dealing in imponed goods. Forcapitalistic as well as cultural poses, entrepreneurs ot (breien arts ;uul crafts brina io Ann Amor a vaned selection ot uitistic treasures. 1 hese items range from artifacts handcrafted bv natives living fat trom civilizatioïi, to t'addish items mass-produced b) machines in t'oreign industry. Buyer. beware of merchants" claims ot'lovv price and top quulitv sliup around! Terming itselía "Folk Art Gallery" BAOBAB ( I 2$ W. Washington) offers one of the most diverse local collections of Thtid World imports, ranging from South America to África, and carries some rare. centuries old work by pre-( olombian period Indians as well. The emphais is on art. and tlius no clothing is sold there. Available items indude Latin American jewelry and weavings; Peruvian gourds; Makonde seulptures trom lanzania: Aignani rugs;anü vanous wall hangings such as those from África 's Senufo tribes, which consist of bJack-dyed animal and symbols on woven white cloth. The store is run by a brother-sister team-Peter Koepke. and Paula Koepke. and Bill Zolkowski. three travellers who finante t hen travels through import sales locally. Well versed in the various cultures reDresented. Peter is quiek to relate the history and sienificance of many of the works in his store. The Nenufo hangings. mentioned above, for example. bear figures which were once on hunting clothes. intended to bring native hunters luck and protection. Also. check out the African sculptures, meticulously carved in ebony wood, and not too available in this área. i CLOTH OF GOLD (61 1 Church), 1 lA years uld and just recently remodeled is representative of the typical A2 foreign import store. Pottery, jewelry. weavings. dothing and other handicrafts are prevalent admidst a friendly. artistic, and pseudo-cultural atmosphere. Here, the imports are primarily Mexican. Colombian. and Iridian, and are personally selected by the uwner Steve Walters and associates on Frequent trips (o these countries. There is some fine turquoise jewelry available, and Indian shirts sell well. Eixpected in a few months are Wicker cliairs trom India. The store also carries handicrafts produced in this country, and several of the statl are artists selling their own products. FABUNIQUE (Mi E. William ) also has a wide select ion of imported clothes and fabrics, with handbags. exotic jewelry and jewelry boxes hrought in as a sidelight. The management recently cairie upon a wealth of Peruvian blankets. an item iney uon i usuaiiy carry. iianu-emmoiuereu snnts anu niouses are aitect f rom India, where a buyer ventures twice yearly to cup goods. At FOREIGN MATTER (2 15 S. State, upstairs) owner Jeremy A mond's understanding and love fot Central American peasant culture is the inspiration behind his creation of this shop. the walls of which even capture the ethnic fiavor. He personally buys most of his items trom peasants and Indians in Mexico. Guatemala. Costa Rica. Colombia, and otlier nearby lands. and is ready to i discuss tlieir culture and archeology with anyone. His hand knitted Mexican sweaters sell for less than at otlier import stores, and lie carries loom-knil blankets and tapestries. Other interesting items are iewelry and a truly unique hammöck. IMAD'S (3Oc H. Liberty) lias an impressive selection of clothing, nlong with Middle liaslern jewehy and handicraft. Mere you can Tina tne most exquisitely carvecl chess pieces ín town. guaranteeu tu i impress. Also locally unique lo Imad's are a few pieces uf Ivory jewelry. Shoppers should also check out the low-piiced. over-siocked select ion of leather handbags. LITTLE THINGS Cl 5 S. State) is the chic boutique tor the campus freak. SJ They have the best in custom made mail order imports. t MIDDLE EARTH (120') E. University) is tïrmly rooted in Ann Arbor. It opened eight years ago as a head shop carrying papers and Owner Cynthi; has expanded erations in receñí yearv and dio store now carnes ;i jood amount of I ;iiin Vmerican and buropean cultural mpoi ts. I here ís .1 lm ol evervthina here. and Shevel helieves tito prices are reasonable in relation lo ilie qualit) oí producís. She deals mainl) througli import pames m t no Mates, and claims mul inis metnod insures iiiioi quality in the select ion offered. tShevel is also the owner ofthree store? oveí al 21 3 State St; fheGreal American Coverlp rugs:Bead Bad;aadGet Prucked import dothing.) PtRSIAN HOUSE OF IMPORTS COO I libenv) Ali Amiri f iinpoi is more ihan iusi exquisite handicrat't in lus wéll-stucked palace. When ho mports hundmade tlieepskin coals, ramily-made tapestries. Persian rues and awe-insDirina small ul'ts-and collectors' iteim. h brings wiüi htm Ihe arl and ctvilization of the Iranian people. U's wortli ;i visii here 10 mimeisc yourseli n tlie majesty ufPersian culture, with Mr. Aniiii happy to explain the úgnifkance ufeach item. h"s like ;i ii ip lo han, bul ;i bu less e'xpensive. Be sure to sjy. "l'm jusi here to look." Owner Gcorge Julián of THE WORLD IS YOURS (407 N. Flfth, above Kenyiown) readily confesses t tui t his store doésn'l really oflei the world not yet. anyway. Curren tly presenting muinly dioico (cutral ind Lat in American importe of all types, as wel) ;is some Haitian wood carvings, Julián hopes to impon a wider range ofselections in the future. A nativo of California, Julián oponed this store in L July. and stutes (hal lio intends to bring cultural artifaets to the public ut leasonable ratos. Currently ubtaining pieces boili ihiu 1 a middle person and by personal trovéis, lie hopos to do most of I his own tiansaelions in the Future and iluis offer lower pi icos and I sustain himseli on high sales volume. Mis speciatty, Mexican and i Peruvian hand -wo ven woolen blanket-rugs al S5K jworth checkr inaout. r TURKISH ARTS ANDGIFTSCI5 E. Liberty). the managetnenl hasbrouglit toeether a conglomera t ion ofinterestins Rtfts, nol ■rnecessarily all from I urtcey. There is an abimdancé ui smaTI Stone and r metal git'ts, ranfeing frora asitnays to scülpture. They also can y a fe cloihing items, inciudins hand-kniiicd socks and eloves. and 1 uikish slippers, and feature a lar ge varieiy of jewelry items THE WOODSHED(I2I W. Washington )opened rathei recently. and specializes mainly in Indian crat"i--not the Asim knul bui riw naiivc v;mhm Run by (ieorgc McCue. of Indian heritage, and Jack McDonald, from Tennessee, the store also offers ;i smaH select ion of American antiques and handcrafted i'hairs hom down suuth. The Indian goodï include prints. jeweJry. dolls, beads, snow shoes, mocassins, pipe tobáceo, vests, and baskets, produced by Norih American Indians ol tlie Irouuois tribe in Ontario, and by inembers ot" the Moluwk Trihe. Prices are inexpensive. and while these items aren'l necessarily reprcscniative of a loreign culture, thev nevertheless aie tributes lo a lino and proud people who have maintained a culture in a land whicli was once thetrs. Mos! customers will find many mported hand produced goods expensive. compared say. l( American maclltne-fnadc uems. t5iii rememner. nnporieu items are in tnemseives enikitiug. 7 lor they are fiJled witli the spirit of creativity, and represent ilie expression of one's soul. and in turn imparl iliis on lo consuméis in ilus country, where conformity and mass production lus becofne (he norm. w (From top to bottom) A painted Peruvian goutd (rom Baobab, a dangling neckpiece Irom the Persian House of Imports, and South American wallhangings from Foreign Matter are just a few of the crafts to be found in Ann Arbor Photo by Stephen Graham.