Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Textile from Peru

A few years ago I went to a lecture and a class with Priscilla Binanchi who is from Guatemala. The lecture was wonderful, she showed a lot of slides of the native people and their dress in Guatemala. It was very inspiring. I then purchased some of the hand-woven Guatemalan fabrics and added it with some of my fabrics and started to piece a wall hanging. I didn't finish it and put it away not sure what I wanted to do. Last weekend I got it out and the wall hanging told tell me what to do. Most of the fabrics in it are Guatemalan, the bright yellow is a woven piece I purchased when I was in Peru, it looked too yellow so I appliqued the purple and orange woven pieces (from my son-in-laws traditional outfit), (hand woven in Nigeria). He gave the outfit to me, I hung the top on a wall in my living room and cut up the pants to use in their wedding quilt, I kept the scraps for myself. The pieced "Sunshine" I pieced years ago and it was pinned to the wall in my studio. There are a few batik fabrics in the top, and the outside boarder is nubby silk I dyed and stamped when I was in Alaska. When I finished the piece I named it "Grandma Sunshine" when I realized the 4 Nigerian pieces represent my 4 grandchildren who call me Sunshine!
In 2001 I went to Peru with my girlfriend, we spent a week in Lima touring the ruins and shopping at the outdoor markets, then we flew to Iquitos to meet up with a medical missionary team. We spent a week on a house boat traveling the tributaries to the Amazon, stopping at different native villages. It was a beautiful experience. I thought I'd show you a few of the textiles I purchased on my trip, I bought so many I could hardly close my suitcase. Before I left home I appliqued the map of South America on fabric and all the while on the trip I embroidered in the details, I made my girlfriend and myself one. When we were at the Inca market we each bought a small hand woven blanket which we slept with on the boat and then I cut them up when we got home and used it as the boarders. The photos were some I took in the villages and transferred to fabric. I'm not sure how well you can see the pictures, one shows me canoeing in a hand carved log canoe. It really needs more quilting but by the time I finished my girlfriends and got to mine I was ready to work on something different.

This is one of the pieces I bought at the Inca market, it's called a Arpillera and was made in the shanty towns surrounding Lime. All hand appliqued. They were originally made by the local women to protest what was happening to their people and have some very sad stories. This one is a jungle scene and the more I look at it the more detail I see. One funny detail is the lion, which are not in Peru.

Close up of a women, she has a machete in her hand, with the snake coiled and coming down the tree.

I purchased this piece at an outdoor market in Iquitos (the main port town to get on the Amazon). The Peruvian Dr. with me said it was made by native people on the Amazon with natural dyes and inks. This is a small section, it's table cloth size.

Another folded piece natural dyed.

This is around 12"x10", I bought it from a native women who had a little child with her. She hand embroidered the piece, if you notice along bottom and top are designs of catholic missions.
I believe the sides have an alter embroidered with the challis on it.
This is a knit hat from the Andes Mts., I had it matted and framed. Natural lama yarn.

These were cute little hand knit finger puppets, they had baskets full of them for sale.
I also bought a full size alpaca blanket for my bed, a baby alpaca shawl, alpaca scarves, fabric doll, etc. When I went there I didn't realize Peru would be textile heaven.

1 comment:

Deb H said...

I love the hand quilting designs in the "Sunshine" quilt. You have some wonderful memories preserved through these pieces.

You are right though, you need to add a little more quilting to the Peru quilt. Make the water sparkle!
Maybe you can do it when I get my Irish Dance dress, & the Hope quilt for Mindy done!!

  • Deb Hardman
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