On the third of November, the Center for Traditional Textiles of Cusco (CTTC) held a “Celebration of Ancestral Textile Arts” to mark the unveiling of its newly remodeled store, educational center, and office building in central Cusco. Throughout the day, representatives from the CTTC’s ten weaving associations spread across the sunlit green lawn of the Qorikancha, the most important temple in all of Incan culture, to work on backstrap looms, show off naturally dyed yarn, and talk with locals and tourists as interested passersby filled the wide sidewalk along the lawn. Dignitaries including the CTTC’s executive director Nilda Callañuapa, the CTTC’s board president Miryam Luna, and the mayor of Cusco, Víctor G. Boluarte Medina, all spoke warmly about the important role of textiles in Peru’s culture and history, and the critical work of the CTTC in preserving and reviving that heritage.
After the public celebration at the Qorikancha, guests moved next door to a private evening reception at the CTTC’s updated building. New photography and video installations highlight the ten weaving villages and their unique textile traditions, and a redesigned store interior serves as a modern showcase for colors, yarns, and finished goods. The updated store feels simultaneously cozy and like a beautiful art gallery, and is a wonderful blend of history and education in addition to an inspiring shopping destination.
As major funders of the renovation, Andean Textile Arts was thanked repeatedly and warmly throughout the day for our donors’ support. Several ATA board members were in attendance, and were so pleased to see such a vibrant space taking shape in downtown Cusco thanks to your contributions.
Stefanie Berganini is a textile hobbyist who joined the ATA board in 2019 after several years of helping with ATA’s newsletter and outreach activities. As a cultural anthropologist, Stefanie studies the human dimensions of political and economic systems. She received her MA from Colorado State University, and is currently working on PhD research focused on community resilience and wellbeing in the face of disaster. Prior to returning to academia, she worked in the publishing industry, both in the editorial world (including as assistant editor of Spin-Off and managing editor of Stitch), and as a freelance graphic designer.