Being a textile lover, I found there actually is a heaven on Earth for people like me. Surrounded by a gorgeous mountainous landscape, the city of Oaxaca sets itself as the epicenter of traditional textile production in Mexico. Being the most ethnically diverse state in the country, Oaxaca offers a wide range of possibilities to explore the richness that exists in textile crafting and artistry.

The TSA Study Tour to Highlands Oaxaca will present a first glimpse at this paradise. From flying shuttle looms in Mitla (home to the pre-Columbian site famous for its textile-like frets), to the back-strap loom used in Santo Tomás Jalieza (the last village to still use this loom in the Central Valleys), the tour will show different techniques and materials used in traditional textile processes. Teotitlán del Valle, a huge village of wool-weavers on treadle looms, and San Miguel Cajonos, a hidden place in the mountains where people spin, dye, and weave silk, will also welcome participants, not only to show them their graceful way of playing with threads and natural dyes, but also to invite them into their households and share with them a day in their lives. I strongly believe that a textile cannot be fully appreciated until we get a chance to know about its creator and its natural, cultural, and even political surroundings.

This Study Tour will give participants that opportunity, for textiles will be the center of attention while Oaxacan history and culture are being presented at the same time. Basketry will also make a special appearance in this tour, as will the cultivation of cochineal, the red gold that produced enough resources as to build the majestic civil and religious buildings throughout the state during the 17th and 18th centuries. Archaeological and Colonial sites will serve as different scenarios for this tour and Oaxacan wonderful cuisine will be ever-present. Of course, the Museo Textil de Oaxaca, located at the very heart of this vibrant state, will open its doors for a private tour to participants. Come and join us on this tour, we are sure that this visit will tightly, and dearly, weave Oaxaca into your hearts.

Hector Meneses


Museo Textil de Oaxaca