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.

womanFOIM is made up of Guatemalan and North American volunteers who share an interest in Guatemala and their commitment to increase appreciation of Mayan textile art.

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.

The Museum itself is located in Guatemala City. A short and engaging overview can be found in a recent article in Revue Magazine (May 2017 issue). For more information, see the 'Museum Highlights' section of this website.



Friends of the Ixchel Museum Bulletin

Current Bulletin - November 2018


Tradition :& Change in San Pedro Sacatepéquez


These are wedding huipils from San Pedro Sacatepéquez in the department of Guatemala.


The one on the top is from the 1910s, the one in the middle dates to the 1930s, and the one on the bottom dates to the 1970s/1980s. They are remarkably similar. Their iconographic composi­tion is basically the same: trees of life and the same number of rows of zoomorphic figures. I find it remarkable that so many coincident features are present over a 70-year time period. These huipils show the strong prescriptive features of what defines a wedding huipil in San Pedro. Today, any person in San Pedro would recognize a wedding huipil from the early 20th century and know exactly what it was. Think about our own culture, especially fashion, and how much changes over even small periods of time, even a year or less.

One of the most important activities undertaken by both the Ixchel Museum and the Friends is to support exhibits large and small. (to read the full article, download the November 2018 bulletin)


In This Issue

  1. Tradition :& Change in San Pedro Sacatepéquez
  2. In the Museum
  3. Mayan Traje: A tradition in transition
  4. Ofrenda Society


View/download the current issue to continue reading »

View the bulletin archive »