The Andean textiles are considered to be the most remarkable artistic and technological achievements of the ancient world. They reflect a unique heritage of woven stories and cultural traditions inspired by the high, windswept deserts and snow-capped peaks of the Andes. In the ancient Andean world, textiles served as a primary form of artistic expression as well as a powerful visual medium for portraying nature’s secrets and the order of the universe. Textile traditions In the Andes date back thousand of years, and continue to be a great importance for Andean cultures a symbol of their cultural identity. Each community expresses its character trough their traditional clothing designs. Unfortunately, economic and cultural pressures make difficult to keep the weaving traditions alive. Younger generations declined to learn how to weave, and the traditions behind.
In 1996, the non-profit organization Center for traditional textiles of Cusco was born to recapture the history, spread information about, and stimulate the productions providing support to the communities. CTTC Works permanently with nine communities of Cusco Region, nearly thousand weavers and its families to encourage appreciation of traditions, particularly among young people, and create possible pathways to the viability of weaving as an art profession. CTTC manages different education programs, and a valuable contribution to the lives of individuals, the quality of weaving and to the world´s appreciation for and recognition of the textiles and their creators.
Images from Joe Coca
book “Faces of tradition”