Maya Textiles and Identity in Guatemala

Sept. 1 to Oct. 14, 2018

Maya Textiles and Identity in Guatemala opens on Saturday, Sept. 1, 2018. The exhibition will contain more than one hundred hand woven garments and other textiles, and is curated by Carol Ann Lorenz, of Colgate University.

The exhibition will highlight the textiles of different Guatemalan pueblos and how they illustrate indigenous identity on various cultural and social levels.

Sections of the exhibition will have specific themes. For example, one gallery includes three generations of the same family, showing how designs created by a master weaver are passed down to her descendants as cultural property. Other galleries will explore regional preferences in color and design; continuity and change over time in specific pueblos; and a single textile type –the su’t or tzute – which is a utility cloth with various everyday or ceremonial purposes depending on size and degree of elaboration.

The main hall of the museum will display a traditional Maya backstrap loom, as well as an array of huipiles, women’s hand woven blouses, that demonstrate the variety of shapes, colors, and patterns that have been created among the various Maya pueblos. The textiles in this exhibition date from the late 19th century to the early 21st century.

About the curator

Carol Ann Lorenz is an associate professor at Colgate University and current director of the college’s Native American Studies Program. From fall 1987 through fall 2014, she served in various curatorial capacities at the Longyear Museum of Anthropology at Colgate, including senior curator from 2005 to 2014.

During her tenure at the museum, Lorenz researched and organized original exhibitions on a wide variety of topics, including 81 in the Longyear Museum gallery, 25 elsewhere on the Colgate campus, and 12 in various museums and university galleries, including the Munson-Williams-Proctor Arts Institute in Utica, the Everson Museum in Syracuse, Karpeles Manuscript Library Museum in Buffalo, and Stone Quarry Hill Art Park in Cazenovia.

Lorenz’s research interests include the art and culture of Africa and the indigenous Americas, Southwest and Northeast Native American art, Haudenosaunee art and artists, Indigenous textiles and pottery.