about

Anne Weis has been wending her way through both of her passions: human well being in motion and textile arts.  The combination of these two passions has given birth to the Chatura NPO and to the An’tchi collection, a special collection of hemp clothing dyed with plants and vegetables.

In her early childhood, Anne went to ballet classes. Fascinated by her grandmother’s sewing and dressmaking, Anne started sewing at the age of 11.

She then devoted some of her time to modern and contemporary dance as well as yoga and Bharata Natyam, a classical Indian dance. She was totally captivated by this complex narrative dance in which each muscle works independently from the other.

In 1979 she travelled to India to study the Bharata Natyam dance. As some difficulties stood in the way, she made the most of the situation and started visiting this huge country. India opened its Eastern doors of wisdom and knowledge to her. It is in this wonderful country that she encountered the art of fabrics. She also learnt about the impact of British colonization on ethics and industrialization, in particular, the shift from craftsmanship to industrial production. During this first Indian experience, she got to know the principle of autonomy claimed by Ghandi as well as ayurvedic medicine. She also realized how important it was to have a healthy and diversified diet. This first trip to India was later followed by many others.

Anne got herself a cutter certificate and started creating costumes for several small theatre companies. After a while, she turned to floriculture without knowing that she would later combine her passion for plants and for textiles.

In 1988 Anne discovered Taijiquan with Master PanWen Jun. She quickly realized that this martial art suddenly brought her what she had always been looking for. A profound link between the body and the brain as well as a deeper form of relaxation linked to inner practices but also a fresh perspective on what health was supposed to be.

Since 1992, she has been a secretary at the Free University of Brussels. From 1995 to 2000, she got to know the FTRP (The Future of Tropical Rainforest People) and became aware of the dangers of tropical forest destruction. During a trip to Cameroon in Africa she saw how industrialized countries were involved in a never-ending deforestation and also realized that the impact of a liberal globalization was a form of neo-colonialism. Western countries seemed to be the only ones to take advantage of all the resources while rejecting newly arrived immigrants who came to the first-world countries.

To complete her quest towards a true well being, she created the NPO Chatura where you can attend Taijiquan classes and sewing workshops.

In 2003, after 20 years of learning and teaching experience in Taijiquan (Yang and Chen styles), she discovered the Taoist practices with Tian LiYang, the Wudangshan Taoist master.  He taught her the Wudang Michuan version of Taijiquan and the therapeutic Taoist Qi Gong. In 2005 she decided to start studying traditional Chinese medicine (Tuina et Anmo) from which these practises originate.

Her interest in hemp fibres then grew exponentially and as she discovered that cultivating the hemp plant didn’t contaminate or dry out soils, she decided to promote the use of hemp fabrics. But it is definitely her encounter with the First Nations people from British Columbia in Canada, a people living in total harmony with nature and who developed the art of dyeing cellulosic fabrics with plants that made her familiar with the wide variety of plants offering many harmonious and colourful dyes.

Later she met chemist Michel Garcia who became her master dyer. In 2009 all these beautiful encounters led the creation of the An’tchi collection, a clothing collection made out of hemp fabric and vegetable dyes. The An’tchi collection, a collection naturally made in Belgium.