These handmade bags — known as mochilas — feature design motifs deeply symbolic to the Wayuu tribe. The Wayuu are a fiercely independent peoples inhabiting the autonomous desert region of La Guajira, Colombia. The mochilas they weave are embued with a playful and ever-changing array of colors. Kanas, the word for patterns in Wayuu language, portray values and beliefs sacred to the Wayuu culture. By incorporating these images into their work, a traditional way of life is depicted and honored. Great importance is given to each design detail and its execution. While each piece represents the continuous preservation of ethnic heritage, a constant stream of evolution occurs as weavers skillfully manipulate old forms and motifs, changing scale and composition, breathing new life into their work.

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