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|Peruvian Andes decorative textile panel
|Cotton and camiled wool
|Peruvian Andes - Aymara
|Height 85 cm, width 54 cm
|Mid 20th century
|Field collected Puno Peruvian Andes 1974
|Complex woven textiles have been a continuing tradition in both the Peruvian and Bolivian Andes for many generations, from the Pre-Columbian era to the present day. They have also served a wide variety of functions, from clothing, carriers for babies and other valuables, for ritualistic and ceremonial purposes, for communicating status, for exchange, for amour and for burial (wrapping of the dead). Arid desert conditions in the Peruvian coastal regions have preserved dyed textiles as old as 6,000 years.
The most common weaving method was the back strap loom. Natural and later synthetic cotton was the main warp material, dyed camelid weft threads adding structural strength. Camelid hair is very permeable allowing natural plant based and other dyes to be fixed easily.
This example of Andean weaving is a beautiful Peruvian Andean decorative textile panel, purchased in Puno in 1974, woven by local Lake Titicaca Aymara Indians. with a complex interlocking pattern of water birds (swans. storks or Lake Titicaca Grebes, Rollandia microptera). Mainly natural Llama wool with some died yarns.