Letter From Eric, May 31, 2008

I have been at the Museo Textil de Oaxaca for only for 2 weeks and I am still trying to understand and learn the complexities of the job. I had a group of 9 year old kids today to test the workshop I proposed. Mexican kids are very different from those in America. They were giggling, cavorting and talking about who’s in love with who and the school teachers. But, after it was all done, they had created a small textile woven from a cardboard loom :)

There are so many projects planned that I will be involved with here. I’ll be developing the certification for rugs woven with natural dyes. I will also be designing interactive display structures that explain the fibers, colors, weaving and spinning. The museum asked me to also develop an international exchange between weavers of Oaxaca and other countries. All of this could take a year or more before it happens.

The current exhibit we have is called “De Mitla a Sumatra: The Art of the Woven Fret” with over 130 pieces from different places in the world using the Greca as a universal pattern in every weaving culture. This exhibit will be up until August 2008.

Alejandro de Avila is the museum curator and I haven´t met him yet. He´s doing hundreds of things around Oaxaca.

Tomorrow is Sunday, and I am so glad I am staying in Teotitlan all day :) I feel very tired by the end of the work day. I have been reading a lot about Oaxacan textiles and natural dye books in the last two weeks. It’s a lot of information. Next week I will start to use the museum kitchen to experiment with the new methods I´ve learned from the books. Life is good, as you said. The only thing I am missing is spending enough time with my family :(

Norma’s Note: Museo Textil de Oaxaca is open Monday-Friday, 9 a.m. to 7 p.m., and Saturday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Current exhibit: “De Mitla a Sumatra (From Mitla to Sumatra): The Art of the Woven Fret” through August 2008

One Response to Letter From Eric, May 31, 2008

  1. Hi, I just returned from 10 days in Oaxaca with my family and have to say that the new textile museum was one of the highlights of our museum experiences. The renovated space is beautiful, with the freshly stuccoed walls and classic high ceilings and the remaining frescos in the capilla. The wood work was so beautifully done, as well. The exhibit of textiles fills such an obvious need – to link the local geometric designs from Mitla to the similar, seemingly universal yet spontaneous creations from around the world. I loved it but wished that there had been more English text and greater attention to the actual methods of weaving the various patterns. Enjoy your stay there! The biblioteca seemed like a wonderful space to research designs and textile traditions. The kitchen and work area in the open space was also charming. I would love to have attended a workshop in dyeing or weaving there. I hope that school groups will use that space a great deal to help sustain the rich cultural tradition of textiles in the area. What a treasure, and it was free!

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