Recently we have been contacted by our friends and partners from GTS Travel Agency of Uzbekistan with a question if Bibi Hanum would be ok to be featured on NHK World Japan television channel. When asked why Bibi Hanum, the response was because Bibi Hanum was known for empowering women and that was a topic that they were interested in covering. We certainly agreed as the topic was mutually interesting.
The crew consisting of Miho – the coordinator of the project, Naoki Hashimoto – President of Cosado Inc. the producer of the program, Keiji Yabuki – Director of Photography planned to arrive to Tashkent and meet with me on a warm December morning in a train that was heading to Margilan. Margilan is city in Ferghana Valley and is considered to be a major textile center of Uzbekistan.
The plan was to introduce to the crew the major textile partners of Bibi Hanum and film the women behind the weaving process of all the ikat fabrics.
After three days of hard work and constant shooting the weaving process of the ikat fabrics, visiting and filming the local market where they sell fabrics, interviewing the women and filming their family and life styles, we headed back to Tashkent to introduce our women behind Bibi Hanum brand.
Filming started with a regular work day that each one of us usually have and at some point we even forgot that we were being filmed. The warm and soft character of the Japanese people was not alien for our women and felt like they were part of the Bibi Hanum team and were doing part of their work.
After extensive filming and interviewing our workers, the film crew also had a chance to meet our master embroiderer and our major partners at HYATT Regency hotel. The almost ten day filming finished with a warm farewell dinner at my house.
The film crew had a chance to meet my husband Alisher and kids and of course film our time at home after hard working days.
The documentary about Bibi Hanum will be broadcasted through NHK World Japan in February of 2019. We thank the Japanese film crew, Miho and Hasan Hatamov who was our interpreter and guide throughout the trip. We also thank our partner, master artisan Rasuljon and his son Abdulloh for arranging and showing the major techniques of the drawing, tie-dyeing process of ikat fabric even though it was winter and not all the processes would be easy to demonstrate.