Textile Collection, Museo Ixchel del Traje Indigena, Guatemala City, Guatemala
The Ixchel Museum has formed an exhaustive and inclusive collection of costume from the indigenous communities of Guatemala that continues as an ongoing activity. The collection includes almost 8,000 pieces originating from 147 towns and 34 villages, so that 181 communities are represented, dating from the end of the 19th Century until today.
The Textile Collection is kept under conditions appropriate for its conservation. The area where it is housed was built under specifications designed to prevent and control deterioration factors (humidity, light, natural disasters, insect infestation, temperature, handling, vandalism) and to guarantee conservation of the collection.
Given that indigenous dress is not only constantly changing and in some communities it has all but disappeared, garments have been collected to document and show the evolution and transformation of the Maya textile tradition. The collection has been built based on textile donations but occasionally funds have been raised to purchase pieces. Whenever possible, pieces were sought that filled stylistic and temporal gaps in the collection. Donations from private collections, especially those that were made in the first decades of the 20th Century, formed the basis of the museum’s collection.