Weaving Generations Together: Evolving Creativity in the Maya of Chiapas

Monday, October 2, 2017 - 4:15pm to Friday, December 15, 2017 - 4:15pm

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Forty-six years of research on culture and human development and dozens of hand-woven textiles from Chiapas give rise to "Weaving Generations Together", a visual exhibit presented in the Powell Rotunda and East Rotunda for the Fall 2017 quarter. This exhibit is co-curated and brought to UCLA by Dr. Patricia Greenfield. It has extensive UCLA co-sponsors, including the Center for the Study of Women; the American Indian Studies Center; the Latin American Institute; the Center for Mexican Studies; the Chicano Studies Research Center; Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion; the Fiat Lux program; and the Office of Instructional Development.

Step into the role of cultural anthropologist as you look upon the textiles in this exhibit, and see the historical changes to fabric and design method from 1969 to the present. These changing styles reflect a shift in the Zinacantec hamlet of Nabenchauk from a substistence economy in the 1970's to a more commerce-based economy in the 2000's. The availability of new, cheaper materials and the development of a commercial economy has allowed women weavers to move from "community creativity", where all garments are structured similarly based on the needs of the community, to "individual creativity", where the innovative mindset of each weaver is reflected in their unique garments. These textiles can be used to track the cultural shifts that occur as a village economy moves from subsistence and agriculture to money and commerce, and the corresponding changing roles for women. 

Be sure to check out the opening reception for this exhibit on October 5th!

Stop by the Powell Rotundas and observe these textiles - they tell a rich story of cultural transition. 


Powell Library
East Rotunda