A large scale exhibition of my work is scheduled for Sept 2010 at MACLA, Movimiento de Arte y Cultura Latinoamericana, in San Jose during the Zero1 Biennial. MACLA has allowed me to use the exhibition to showcase (and kickstart) collaborative works with artisans—and for the first time in my art career, allow me to become a catalyst for social change through the creation of craft.
The Chiapas Project, shown below, will serve as Phase 1 of a longer-planned relationship with artisans worldwide, helping to provide dignified wages and setting up new modes of sustaining traditions—the creation of Artists Helping Artisans (AHA!).

For more information on the Chiapas Project and the creation of AHA! please see bottom "Project Info" section.

Tanya Aguiñiga

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Rosa Gomez/Weaving Teacher and Her Family

As mentioned in the "Collaborators 1" post, Rosa's family in Zinacantan are very skilled weavers and makers of beautiful hand woven wares. Here are some shots of their work and shop, Artesanias Alcatraz.

One of the most rewarding parts of this whole experience has been getting to know families intimately and becoming a part of their everyday lives. We visit Rosa for our weaving classes everyday and spend 2-4 hours with her and her daughters. We are now to the point where not only are we learing new skills daily, we are learning about lots about each others' customs, traditions, regions and food. We are equally as curious about each other and spend hours sharing stories and asking each other questions. They have never been outside of a couple mile radius, so having us there has also been an exciting part of their lives. They have grown to trust us and we have even been able to talk to her about and help  with health issues. Rosa and Belinda have been trading recipes, and Rosa has taught her how to make Mayan tortillas, how to roast coffee. Belinda made an asian stir-fry to show Rosa how to make fried rice and introduce her to different spices. Our interaction with this family has been worth the whole trip. We expected to learn crafts, but are coming away with much more.

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