41cm X 41cm
Depicting Incan gods and beautifully intricate embroidered using Wool (lana). The designs are drawn out using pencil on the fabric and then embroidered over the top.
The designs are taken from real life, or of stories the women have heard or been told over their lifetimes. Many designs take on romantic stories, children playing, the men working, or the ancient theology and gods of the religions of the area. Volariena is Catholic but still holds a strong affinity for the Inca god's.
There are two ways of making these products; crochet or embroidery. Crochet is a lot quicker but for the medium-sized tapestries these can still take over a month. Embroidery using Alpaca can take over three months, it's a real process of love and hard work.
Close to the town of Puno on the shores of lake Titicaca lies the Uros islands which consist of 100 islands where 2000 people live. All of the islands are free floating on a bed of roots with reeds cut and then put on top, they have to change the reeds every 15 days. There is so much work involved to keep this paradise alive. The lake sits at 3850m above sea level making it the world’s highest navigable body of water. The indigenous language here is Imara but all of the younger generations speak Spanish.
Here on the island Tabenciou there are six families and 22 people total. In the main meeting area of this small island, the families gather and tell stories of life on the islands. There is one kindergarten and two floating schools among the 100 islands. In the centre of this island is a small hole around 30 centimeters wide where the men will fish.
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