Peruvian textiles are works of art, full of meaning and symbolism. In ancient times they were valued more than gold or silver. Today the tradition of textile production still continues and many skills have been passed down throughout the generations. Hand-weaving, knitting, crochet and embroidery are incredibly labour intensive processes. Fabrics made using these techniques can be seen everywhere in Peru and many women, especially in rural areas, still wear or carry these beautiful cloths. I took these photos when I was passing through remote villages whilst hiking in the Cañón del Colca. The well-worn fabrics shown here were used to carry heavy loads, or babies, slung across their shoulders.
Handcraft around the world has been affected by the production of cheap mass produced goods and resulting in a homogeneous marketplace. Balance between mass production and craft, the fast and slow, is needed in order to move towards a more sustainable future. I want to embrace new technologies, but not forget traditional craft techniques; combining and contrasting the old and the new for innovative results.
- December 15, 2014