About Friends of the Ixchel Museum

Friends of the Ixchel Museum (FOIM) is a U.S. charitable foundation established in 1984 that promotes interest in the Mayan textile tradition of Guatemala and the work of the Museo Ixchel. In this way, it contributes to the understanding, preservation and protection of this important cultural legacy.


Every year, the Friends sponsor publications and projects both in the U.S. and in Guatemala. Among them are educational programs, ethnographic research and photographic documentation in several communities, as well as the classification and cataloging of the museum’s collections of textiles and photographs. It has also made possible the English translation and publication of several of the museum’s works, the production of videotapes in Spanish and English, and a Spanish language activity book for children.

Its work to publicize and promote Guatemalan textiles includes putting on exhibits in the United States and publishing a biannual newsletter describing both FOIM activities and those of the museum.



Friends of the Ixchel Museum Bulletin

Current Bulletin - June 2015

Friends of the Ixchel Museum - June 2015 BulletinClockwise from top left: President Juan Orlando Hernández of Honduras, Vice President Joseph Biden, President Otto Perez Molina of Guatemala, President Salvador Sánchez Cerén of El Salvador. A back-strap weaving demonstration for the Japanese royal couple, Prince Akishino, the second son of the Emperor, and his wife Princess Kiko. Irina Bokova head of UNESCO (center) on a private tour of the museum.

The Ixchel Wows World Class Leaders

For a number of years the Museo Ixchel has been rated as the must-see museum in Guatemala. We get great press from all the travel guides to Guatemala and private tour operators. In these last few months, we have been receiving guests of extraordinary stature. In and of itself this is interesting, but it demonstrates that the reputation of the Museo Ixchel has reached a new level.

In October of 2014, we were approached by the Japanese ambassador to Guatemala to arrange a visit to the museum for Prince Akishino, the second son of the Emperor, and his wife Princess Kiko. Given the Japanese love of textile material, this is not surprising. It is an art form shared by both Guatemala and Japan. There are extensive collections of Maya textiles in major Japanese museums and a large number of private collectors. The Museo Ixchel has collaborated on exhibitions in Japan and with Japanese scholars doing research in Guatemala.

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