It happens rarely that a foreign craft is so intensely identified with a region to the extent that it becomes its symbol. However, that is exactly what happened with the old Spanish lace from Extremadura, which in Paraguay even lost its name and was baptized with another that does not corresponds with the concept of its original name: a sun became a spider’s web and in that in long evolutionary process Ñandutí was born.
This process of acculturation is documented and expertly narrated in this book, which also includes a chapter describing the technique of this lace; comments on its many motifs with a list of them; as well as the life of a ñandutí lacemaker, her world, her daily travails; that of a peasant woman for whom the making of each lace “is a creative act that is renovated with the start of each new piece which throughout its process demands constant imagination”. As with every creative act, the intrinsic beauty of ñandutí is revealed, without a doubt, by the aesthetic sense of each lacemaker as she recreates her own world in her work.
This volume also describes the technique for making Ñandutí, validates its cultural and economic impact, and includes an extensive catalog of one hundred and sixty four original designs, as well as well as illustrations of finished pieces. It summarizes the research carried out over a period of over thirty years from historical sources and in situ.