Textiles from Mexico (Fabric Folios Series)

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Mexican textiles have a vitality that is unsurpassed elsewhere in the Americas. The arts of spinning, dyeing, weaving, and embroidery are practiced in hundreds of rural communities where indigenous people retain distinctive clothing styles. Their sense of design and color is dazzling and in many cases native traditions, such as Mayan or Mixtec, are coupled with postcolonial influences to fabulous effect. Over 20 such pieces from the British Museumis vast collections have been photographed and explored in detail ...
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Overview

Mexican textiles have a vitality that is unsurpassed elsewhere in the Americas. The arts of spinning, dyeing, weaving, and embroidery are practiced in hundreds of rural communities where indigenous people retain distinctive clothing styles. Their sense of design and color is dazzling and in many cases native traditions, such as Mayan or Mixtec, are coupled with postcolonial influences to fabulous effect. Over 20 such pieces from the British Museumis vast collections have been photographed and explored in detail for this book. They range from a nineteenth-century rebozo, or shawl, made for a wealthy landowner to everyday pieces such as a huipil from Oaxaca. Anyone interested in textiles and design will find a wealth of inspiration in this book, and the detailed photographs will reveal unexpected nuances of pattern-making. Drawing on her extensive travels in Mexico, Chloe Sayer provides a living context for these varied textiles. Techniques and clothing styles are explained, and brief commentaries highlight the key features that make the designs so eye-catching and uniquely Mexican.
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Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
As a cultural art, textiles are under constant change as countries modernize, so preservation is a challenge. These two titles are part of the "Fabric Folios" series on regional textile arts produced by the University of Washington Press in an attempt to document specific aspects of this art form. (The four previous titles are Embroidery from India and Pakistan, Miao Textiles from China, Printed and Dyed Textiles from Africa, and Textiles from Guatemala.) The diversity of Mexican culture is reflected in its textile arts, as shown in Textiles from Mexico by Sayer, a researcher and author of several books on Mexican culture arts and heritage. Traditional costumes, the construction of cloth and garments, and the symbolism of traditional ornamentation are all detailed. While the modern tourist trade influences much of the current production of textiles in parts of Mexico, cultural roots back to the Maya civilization can still be seen in the work. In Silk in Africa, Spring and Hudson, both curators in the British Museum's Department of Ethnography and authors in the field of African cultural arts, specifically address the use of silk in selected African regions. Each region had different methods or techniques of silk construction or ornamentation, but for many locations silk was a status symbol, used to indicate nobility, to honor ancestors, or in religious context. The layout of these books is the same, with a 14-page section of illustrated text followed by a catalog of detailed photos of textiles taken from the museum's Department of Ethnography. The organization is crisp and attractive, and the more than 100 full-color illustrations are delightfully detailed and clear. Both books serve as a charming, lightweight introduction to their topics, but, unfortunately, the paperback binding of the two books reviewed here did not hold up to normal usage-a major disappointment. Recommended for academic or specialized collections.-Karen Ellis, Nicholson Memorial Lib. Syst., Garland, TX Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780295982342
  • Publisher: University of Washington Press
  • Publication date: 8/28/2002
  • Series: Fabric Folios Series
  • Pages: 88
  • Product dimensions: 8.98 (w) x 8.54 (h) x 0.32 (d)

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