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Arts of the Americas

This Wari tunic with abstract tapestry-woven designs is slightly later than the other two examples displayed nearby. The rectangular images on the four vertical bands are actually abstracted faces, in profile, with a vertical split eye, teardrop line, fanged mouth, and hat. These faces alternate with a stepped-fret motif (steps connected to a spiral), and these designs are deliberately compressed and distorted in some places, especially toward the sides.

More common than the sleeved varieties, this tunic and the numerous others with similar abstract imagery suggest a standardization of garment style and decoration, including frequent use of the color red. This standardization may indicate state control of textile production within Wari society.


Esta túnica Wari con diseños abstractos de técnica del tapiz es un poco posterior a los otros ejemplares exhibidos contiguamente. Las imágenes rectangulares en las cuatro bandas verticales son, en realidad, rostros en abstracción, de perfil, con un ojo rasgado vertical, una línea de lágrima, una boca con colmillos y un sombrero. Estos rostros se alternan con un motivo de ondulaciones escalonado (escalones conectados a una espiral), y estos diseños han sido comprimidos y distorsionados deliberadamente en algunas áreas, especialmente hacia los lados.

Más común que las variantes con mangas, esta túnica y tantas otras con similares diseños abstractos, sugiere una estandarización del estilo de las prendas de vestir y la decoración, incluyendo el uso frecuente del color rojo. Esta estandarización, puede ser indicativa del control estatal de la producción textil en la sociedad Wari.
MEDIUM Cotton, camelid fiber
DATES 650-1000
DIMENSIONS 40 3/16 x 43 11/16 in. (102 x 111 cm)
COLLECTIONS Arts of the Americas
MUSEUM LOCATION This item is not on view
CREDIT LINE A. Augustus Healy Fund
CATALOGUE DESCRIPTION Tapestry weave tunic of a light golden brown with four vertical panels featuring a profile face and stepped-fret (face-fret) motif. The colors are golden brown, red, turquoise blue, brown and white. The warp threads are cotton and the weft threads are camelid fiber. Condition: Poor; the textile is brittle and torn in many places. The interior is lined with cotton fabric and the exterior is covered with a yellow ochre-colored net.
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