Ancient Peruvian Textiles Workshop, 2004-2010
Camille Breeze directed the Ancient Peruvian Textiles Workshop in Peru each January from 2004 to 2010. She founded this program to foster collaboration between American and Peruvian archaeologists and conservators. By the time the project was completed, sixty-seven conservators and textile enthusiasts from seven countries had volunteered to conserve fragile pre-Columbian textiles.
Camille's partner in the Ancient Peruvian Textiles Workshop was Peruvian archaeologist Rommel Angeles Falcon, whom Camille met in Lima in 2002. Rommel is the Director of the Huaca Malena Museum, located 100 km south of Lima. Huaca Malena Museum contains the collections salvaged from the Huaca Malena archaeological site, which was heavily looted in the 1980s. Among the 3000 textiles in the collection are exquisite examples of nearly every known textile structure and type created by pre-Columbian cultures.
Click here to read Rommel's article The Archaeological Project of Huaca Malena.
The success of the Ancient Peruvian Textiles Workshop over the seven years that it ran was due to the contributions of many people including all of the students who participated. Together we have conserved seventy textiles, mummy bundles, and mummified heads for the Huaca Malena Museum and Huaca Huallamarca Museum. We hope that this program can serve as a model for self-funding programs in other parts of the world where cultural patrimony is being protected with very limited resources.
Please click here take a virtual tour of the 2008 exhibit Five Year of Collaboration: Museum Textile Services and Huaca Malena.
"I think the gift you bring to Peru with this workshop is undervalued. It is a wonderful experience and gives the participants an opportunity to give where there is a real need."
- Peggy Whitehead, student 2005 & 2008
"You present a wonderful program that improves each year - you deserve recognition and praise for your classes, enthusiasm and ability to organize daunting tasks that all of us feel proud to be a part of."
- Cynthia Little, student 2005 & 2006
Conservation reports from past Ancient Peruvian Textiles Workshops can be found on our Resources Page.