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Ketut Karsini

Artisan Organization: Ketut Karsini

Country: Bali and Java

"My name is Ketut Karsini and I'm a woodcarver from Bali. Our island is famous as a tourist designation because of its scenic sights and cultural traditions. I'm the fourth of five children in a family of woodcarvers. My father raised me to be independent and taught me to carve when I was young.

"When I was still in elementary school, I began painting wood sculptures. A friend taught me how to paint and I wanted to create something different from what my parents crafted. I learned from observing. Eventually, I began painting my parents’ sculptures, wall panels and masks.

"Unexpectedly, these carvings all sold out, which inspired me to create more items. As I learned to develop my skills, I came to love this work.

"My friends say I'm humble and diligent but a bit shy. My husband used to work in my parents' workshop before we got married. Now, we have three sons and they've encouraged us to be more responsible so they have a better future.

"Once, during a difficult time, when my eldest son became sick, my parents helped us buy milk for our children because we didn't have a car.

"Today, my husband and I work with other family members and twelve helpers. We use only manual tools, albesia wood and acrylic paint. We strive to create unique designs to set us apart from other artisans who create similar items.""