While IAAPA generally proves to be arcade games and fun snacks, we did have some fun scanning the expo floor for companies who’ve had a hand in Disney products or might influence future projects. One such company was Ama Zulu Inc and their work on Pandora – The World of Avatar.
We first stopped by the booth because of the distinctive, hand-woven look of a butterfly display. We knew we had seen it somewhere before.
Ama Zulu was contracted to do custom weaving work for Pandora – The World of Avatar at Disney’s Animal Kingdom. They said their product is authentically hand-woven in Africa. Hyacinth leaves are sourced from a riverbank in Africa and are turned into wonderful pieces of art, including the attraction totems.
Ama Zulu used natural materials for interior art installations such as those seen in Windtraders and Satu’li Canteen, and chose synthetic materials for outdoor work such as the attraction totems, and thatched roof canopies.
They said that their techniques and processes lead to prices below what it would cost Disney Imagineers to do themselves. Disney demanded a high-quality, authentic product that would stand the test of time in the demanding Central Florida (ahem, Pandoran) weather, and Ama Zulu delivered. All in all, their work on Pandora – The World of Avatar took 2 years.
Ama Zulu specializes in supply, fabrication, and installation of natural building material pieces and worked on Universal Orlando’s Volcano Bay water park in addition to Pandora – The World of Avatar.