Join us on an 11 day Textile Arts Tour of Guatemala – Textile Center’s 2nd International Tour!

Monday, October 29 – Thursday, November 8, 2018

Co-presented by Textile Center and Multicolores – a Guatemalan nonprofit that supports talented and motivated women artisans through craft development, education and cultural exchange.

Guatemala is a country steeped in textile traditions. The Maya people have a rich history of weaving and other crafts handed down through the generations. Travel the Highlands visiting artisans with a focus on textiles. Learn about the Maya culture and the Maya peoples’ lives while visiting their homes and communities.

  • Lake Atitlán – visit to San Juan La Laguna, known for both natural “ixcaco” (a natural mauve, sage and brown) cotton and dyeing revived in this community and intricately embroidered textiles with colorful bird motifs commonly worn by the indigenous men and women,
  • Weavers in San Antonio Agua Calientes considered the finest in all Guatemala, using complex double sided weaving on simple backstrap looms,
  • In Quetzaltenango meet Juan de Dios Rodas Galvez a third generation Ikat (Jaspe) artist, who will speak about and demonstrate a complex and ancient way of resist dyeing yarn prior to weaving
  • Visit basket makers working with a fair trade nonprofit, there will be a demonstration of how to make pine needle baskets and talk about their lives,
  • In Momostenango meet Demetrio Ramos, a 70 year-old weaver of old style “acordando” blankets, both artists Juan de Dios Rodas Galvez and Demetrio Ramos appear in the book, Traditional Weavers of Guatemala: Their Stories, Their Lives by Deborah Chandler and Teresa Cordon.
  • Visit and learn about the rug hooking project at Multicolores’ home in Panajachel, artisans will discuss the impact of rug hooking on their lives and demonstrate the technique.

Other cultural highlights:

  • Walking tour through Antiqua (a UNESCO World Heritage Site) to enjoy the best preserved colonial city in the world, featuring the 18th century Baroque Style buildings, afternoon optional tour of a coffee plantation
  • Visit to a Day of the Dead Celebration – a mixture of celebration and ceremony and the Maya culture
  • Day of the Dead Festival featuring the Sumpango Sacatepéqez Kite Festival, see the colorful hand-made and painted cloth and paper kites, depicting religious and folkloric themes and in the afternoon a visit to a series of villages where Maya culture is prevalent and traditional dress is worn
  • Private boat ride across Lake Atitlan, a guided tour of the village of Santiago Atitlan and shopping with a visit to a small museum
  • Observe a Maya ceremony honoring the natural world and ancestors
  • Stroll around Quetzaltenango’s (second largest city) historic center, followed by a visit to the first Catholic church built in Central America (1524)
  • Visit and tour of San Juan Comalapa known for a tradition of primitive folk paintings of village life, ceremonies and legends that began with local artist Andres Curruchich (1891-1969), optional workshop on baskets, textiles or painting.
  • Shop at Guatemala’s biggest and best handicraft market of Chichicastenago where K’iche’ Maya artisans sell woven textiles, ceramic pots, wood carvings, masks, jewelry and much more!
  • Throughout the tour there will be many opportunities to shop for traditional, authentic crafts in stores, local markets and during demonstrations and directly from the artisans. Guatemala’s extensive range of handicrafts include:
  • Textiles from simple woven items to home décor to intricate weavings and blouses “huipiles”; fabric “corte”; wood carvings and painted animal masks, jewelry and jade pieces, beading; paintings in a variety of styles; ceramics and basketry; embroidered pieces.

Tour limited to 14 travelers plus Karl Reichert, Textile Center Executive Director and Tour Leader Jody Slocum of Cultural Cloth, Maiden Rock, WI. The price of the tour is $3,825 plus airfare, based on double occupancy.

For a full itinerary, a reservation form or other questions, please contact Sharon Mulhollam, Membership Coordinator, Textile Center, 612-436-0464,