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In May 2015, a group of 12 New York based designers and artists led by Rebecca Welz arrived in the city of Antigua, Guatemala, to collaborate with artisans in diverse crafts and create a line of products. This project became The Antigua Project, and it follows a model previously conceived by Rebecca in Malinalco, Mexico in 2013 (The Malinalco Project) and in Guyana in 2009 (The Guyana Project).
“The environmentalist Paul Hawken writes in his book Blessed Unrest that there are many movements afoot on a small scale that are brewing all over the world which point to global change. He breaks the movements down into three major areas: environmental sustainability, social justice and preservation of indigenous people. As we become more and more mechanized and production and services are increasingly outsourced, these collaborative projects are a tribute to the makers who work with their hands and the traditions of culture that have been passed down for generations.” (Rebecca Welz, theantiguaproject.wordpress.com)
Guatemala is particularly known for its handcrafted textiles, continuously made with centuries old techniques. For instance, the típico (everyday wear) is composed of a huipil (a shirt woven with a backstrap loom), a
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