Design Motifs on Mexican Indian Textiles

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Author: Weitlaner-Johnson, Irmgard (1914-2011)

Year: 1976

Publisher: Akademische Druck- und Verlagsanstalt

Place: Graz


Volume 1 in two parts. 78 pages with sketches, one map, 206 plates with descriptions, eight of them tipped in color plates. Folio (144" x 10 3/4") bound in original publisher's orange cloth with black lettering to spine and covers. First edition.

This fascinating book is the product of intensive scholarly research, its exacting illustrations based on choice examples of Mexican Indian textiles in many different museums and private collections. Incorporating abstract and geometric forms as well as highly stylized images of flowers, plants, animals, birds, and humans, the patterns represent more than 20 major Mexican Indian cultures. Among the designs are a two-faced feathered serpent from the Huichol culture, an allover pattern dominated by horizontal zigzags woven by the Otomí, and a flower and leaf design from the Tepehua. The Huasteco people are represented by a bold motif featuring prancing animals with bushy tails; a Nahuatl design depicts a lion with a flower in his mouth; while an elegant curvilinear Mazatec motif features flowers, vines, and birds. Other peoples whose art is represented include the Tarahumara, Tepecano, Mestizo, Zapotec, Mixteco, and Cuicatec. In the bold, startling designs originated by these cultures are primal links to the imagery of other cultures and traditions, centuries old and worldwide. Artists, designers, and craftspeople will value this modestly priced collection as a source of striking and unusual royalty-free designs for inspiration and practical use; anyone interested in Mexican Indian culture will find it an important reference as well.


A very good to fine set.

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