By Jane Delcarson
An exhibition of Maya textiles titled “Hand Woven Textiles of the Living Maya” will be on display at the UU Fellowship Gallery May 6- 30.
The garments featured are from the collection of UU Member Karon Winzenz, an art historian and Maya scholar, publishing and teaching in the field. She earned an M.F.A. at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee and has taught traditional textile art including that of the Mayas.
Prof. Winzenz stated, her collection is of “garments that were woven on back-strap looms by Maya women living in the mountainous area of Guatemala and Chiapas, Mexico.
After the Spanish conquest, the Maya experienced 500 years of cultural disruption brought on by the decimation of their population through disease, hunger, racial discrimination, and war faring verging on genocide. Yet this resilient people have endured and some traditional practices have survived.
In the highlands, many women still wear traditional hand-woven clothing. As in many cultures, women are the ones who preserve and pass on traditional knowledge and practices. Although most men have adopted western style clothing for daily wear, many still wear traditional hand-woven regalia in religious and civic ceremonies. Each village has unique designs that are specific to the community. Clothing for both daily wear and ceremonial use from several villages will be displayed.”
The UU Gallery is open to the public on Mon., Wed., Fri. from 1 -3 pm and on Sundays from 11 am until 12:30 pm, no charge. The UU Fellowship is located on Hwy. 42 (Water Street) Ephraim at the south end of the Green Gable Shops. For more information, call (920) 854-7559.