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 an 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 - October/November 2019


FOIM Find Their Way to San Jose Spectrum of Exhibits


Friends of the Ixchel Museum (FOIM) has long sought to mount a museum-quality exhibit featuring our outstanding US textile collection. This summer, we achieved our goal. Just as important, all the building blocks are in place for a repeat in additional locales. 


On July 13th our exhibition Mayan Traje: A Tradition in Transition opened at the San Jose Museum of Quilts & Textiles (SJMQT) in California. The reception was well-attended, including by the new Consul-General for Guatemala in San Francisco, Sylvia Wohlers de Meie. It is estimated that about 2,000 visitors, including local school groups, saw it by the time it closed in mid-October.


The exhibit was curated by Raymond Senuk and Abby Sue Fisher and installed with the help of SJMQT staff and local volunteers. It consisted of about 85 pieces which graced gallery walls and mannequins. The selection was predomiantly beautiful and rare pieces dating from the 1920s to the 50s, with several paired comparisons from the same village to show how little substantive change had taken place. * Then we also featured some contemporary machine-made pieces to provide dramatic contrast, since major changes have recently swept into fashion.


(to read the full article, download the October/November 2019 bulletin)


In This Issue

  1. FOIM Find Their Way to San Jose
  2. In the Museum
  3. Mayan Traje: A Tradition in Transition - our first publication
  4. Honoring Our Mothers


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