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Woman's Blouse

Origin Honduras
Title Woman's Blouse (Huipil)
Date 20th century
Medium Cotton and dye
Dimensions Overall: 25 1/2 x 27 3/4 in. (64.8 x 70.5 cm)
Credit Line Gift of Esther Ritz Collyer, Eskenazi Museum of Art, Indiana University
Accession Number 2006.508

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About this Work

Huipil is a traditional garment worn by Indigenous and mixed ethnicity women and girls in Central American countries like Guatemala, Mexico, and Honduras. It symbolizes the resistance and resilience of Indigenous people against centuries of colonization and cultural oppression, as well as the commodification of Indigenous clothing by Western fashion and cultural industries. Huipiles serve as a symbol of cultural identity and tradition while highlighting Indigenous peoples’ ongoing struggles to maintain their cultural heritage in a globalized world. This huipil was likely made for the tourist market, which increased the demand for the garments and led to their commercialization. Commercial huipiles are made with synthetic materials and, as exemplified in the huipil on view, feature designs and patterns that are not authentic to the region in which they are made. They are produced using modern manufacturing techniques instead of traditional handwoven or hand-embroidered techniques. Despite this, the intricate designs and weaving techniques used in huipil production have been passed down through generations of Indigenous women, reflecting their cultural and artistic skills.

2006, Gift to the Indiana University Art Museum from Esther Ritz Collyer, Bloomington, IN

Unidentified date, Esther Ritz Collyer acquires [1]

Unidentified dates, unidentified owner(s), possibly in Honduras, Guatemala, and/or other places [2]

[1] Esther Ritz Collyer did not provide the museum with any further provenance documentation.

[2] We do not yet know how many changes in ownership transpired between when this artwork was initially made and owned to when Esther Ritz Collyer acquired it. The construction of this cloth suggests that it was likely made for the tourist market.

Provenance research is ongoing for this and many other items in the Eskenazi Museum of Art permanent collection. For more information about the provenance of this artwork, please contact the department curator with specific questions.

August 26, 2023–February 18, 2024, “Textile Heritage in Central and South America,” Focus Gallery Exhibition, Eskenazi Museum of Art, Indiana University, Bloomington, IN

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Cite this Page
"Woman's Blouse | Collections Online." Collections Online. Sidney and Lois Eskenazi Museum of Art, Indiana University, 2024.