Paula Wiesner Collection
This is a rebozo or shawl from Totonicapan, Guatemala. This shawl is made of cotton and was likely woven on a foot loom. The solid color stripes and jaspe (ikat) stripes on this doll are characteristic of many shawls from Totonicapan. Jaspe is a tie-and-dye or resist-dye method, also known as ikat in some parts of the world, which produces patterns in the warp, weft or both in a woven cloth. The weave structure itself is usually plain weave and it can be woven on backstrap or treadle looms, warped faced with vertical designs, weft-faced with horizontal lines, or balanced weave with jaspe designs going in both directions. Shawls serve many functions in Guatemala. A girl or woman can use a shawl as an easy tote to carry small loads to and from the market. Often the bundle is a small sleeping baby that is held close to Mama or an older sister as they run errands, do the many tasks and chores that everyday life in the Mayan culture require, or weave on a back-strap loom. The shawl is also a decorative addition to the traditional huipil and corte (skirt) that many Mayan girls and women wear.
Austin Friends of Folk Art