” Beads and Heritage “


Location: Kuching, Sarawak, Malaysian Borneo
Date: Friday 9th – Sunday 11th October 2015
Venue: The Waterfront Hotel, Kuching

Online Registration

or Download Registration Form and register offline.


Introduction – Beads of Sarawak

The bead culture of Sarawak, part of a greater Malaysian heritage, is rooted in centuries of tradition. An ancient maritime trading network linked Sarawak to the world; the beads most treasured today came from production centres on the Malay Peninsula, India, China, and even further afield. In the hands of Sarawak’s craftwomen and collectors, these masterpieces of the glassmaker’s art became intrinsically ‘Borneo Beads.’

BIBCo 2015 will be the 4th Borneo International Bead Conference, and promises to be even more exciting and vibrant than the past events.

BIBCo 2015 will feature:

  • Academic papers by world-renowned authorities on bead studies
  • Hands-on workshops covering a wide range of disciplines and techniques
  • ‘Borneo Traditional’ workshops
  • Polymer clay and recycled materials workshops
  • Contemporary Bead Design workshops
  • Visits to Craft exhibitions and Museums in Kuching
  • Borneo International Beads Award
  • Exciting post-conference tours

Some of our invited Speakers

Jun Cayron Portrait
Dr. Jun Cayron  
Dr. Jun Cayron, Philippines, (Palawan State University), is an expert on  ancient and historical Beads of the Philippines and adjacent Regions. He has published widely on the topic of the cultural significance of beads in indigenous tradition and heritage.
 Stringing the past : an archaeological understanding of early Southeast Asian glass bead trade
Jamey Allen
Jamey Allen, USA, is an internationally renowned bead scholar and expert who has studied and worked at places like the Smithsonian Institution in Washington DC, and published academic papers as well as books (‘Magical Ancient Beads’).  He will present a paper on Native American Bead Culture, a topic of which he has both academic and practical knowledge.
Daryl Wesley and Mirani Litster
Daryl Wesley & Mirani Lister, Australia have studied the Macassarese (Sulawesi) Trade to Arnhem Land in the 18th century. This study shows the early links between northern Australia and the wider world of the Indonesian/Malaysian archipelago…/posts/610978168939306
 Ashvin Rajagopalan
Ashvin Rajagopalan, India. This Fine Arts graduate (USA) will deliver a paper on  India  – the Bead Story. His special topic is the Ancient Beads of Tamil Nadu, one of the earliest manufacturing centres of beads in South Asia and source of some of the early bead trade materials.
Topic: India – the Bead Story
Dr. Khatijah Sanusi
Khatijah Sanusi, Malaysia, is an expert on traditional and modern textiles. She will present a paper on Beaded Garment Embellishments, from Turkey to Malaysia. She is well-known textile scholar at UTM University who will draw on her wide knowledge of local textile culture and its many international links.
Topic: Beaded Garment Embellishments, from Turkey to Malaysia
Elaine Robnett Moore
Elaine Robnett Moore, USA, Jewelry Designer, consultant and teacher, has many times gone to Africa to teach local women about design and techniques. She will share experiences as an entrepreneur, and provide valuable guidance to the practical artisans.
Topic: The Art of Bead Stringing: Artist to Entrepreneur
Lara Lareveur
Lara Lereveur, Australia,  an inspired bead-making artist, takes the  Polymer clay technique form a craft to an art! She will conduct practical workshops in her chosen art, which will be new to many BIBCo participants from Sarawak.
Wendy Terang
Wendy Terang, Malaysia, is a keen student of the bead lore of Sarawak’s indigenous people. She will speak on the precious  Lukut Sekala Bead, one of the mysteries  of Borneo material culture.
Topic: The Lukut Sekala Bead of Borneo
 Reita Rahim

Reita Rahim was trained as a Graphic Designer but is now a freelance craft researcher specialising in crafts made by the indigenous peoples of Malaysia.  She  runs a fair trade initiative called Gerai OA,  founded in 2004 , described as ‘a nomadic, volunteer-run stall which sells handicrafts made by the Orang Asal, the indigenous minorities of Malaysia.’ Reita will present a paper on the present-day  Rungus bead culture of northern Sabah.


The Official Hotel for the Borneo International Beads Conference 2015 is the brand new Waterfront Hotel at the Merdeka Plaza in the heart of Kuching City, an exciting venue for BIBCO 2015.

Book the Official Partner Hotel, the Waterfront Hotel.

Some other options of hotels in the vicinity (walking distance) to conference:

The Ranee Boutique Suites

2015 Travellers’ Choice award winner– The Ranee is an exclusive 24-room boutique hotel strategically located in the heart of Kuching’s picturesque Old Town, fronting the Sarawak River (14km from Kuching International Airport).  Stylishly rebuilt from two traditional 19th century shophouses and ingeniously adapted to modern standards of plush comfort, The Ranee is unique in that every spacious room/suite is different – designed to express its own individuality, charm and character.  Step into The Ranee and you will be enchanted by the magic of old and new – a fusion style inspired by Sarawak’s rich colonial heritage and mysterious ethnic cultures.  In catering to the discerning traveller, The Ranee boasts an all-day dining/bar serving local and international cuisine, a café offering freshly baked delicacies, an in-house tour desk, and even a business meeting room.
TO BOOK, please click on our link:  Online Booking

Singgahsana Lodge

Singgahsana Lodge is a pioneer award-winning Guesthouse in Kuching, Sarawak, Malaysian Borneo.

Strategically located between the old and new quarters of the city, the lodge is 2 minutes walk from the Kuching Waterfront and diagonally opposite the Tua Pek Kong Temple, the oldest taoist temple in Kuching.  It is an ideal base to explore the city’s quaint streets and enjoy the delicious local food all within a stone’s throw away.

Tastefully decorated with an impressive collection of local artefacts, the lodge  truly exemplifies all that is Sarawak Style. This coupled with well thought out and comprehensive travel services makes Singgahsana Lodge the favoured accommodation option in Kuching.


For any enquiries or more information generally about the event, please email Crafthub Sdn. Bhd.

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