Ancient Andean Textiles
The six textiles in the current installation from the permanent collection were made by weavers of the ancient Chimú civilization, which took root on Peru’s north coast in the year 1000. Over the next four centuries the Chimú created an empire that lasted until the 1460s, when the Inka swept out of the Andes Mountains to incorporate it into their own imperial domain. The garments—fabricated from undyed, white cotton and surely worn by Chimú nobility—represent the major articles of ancient Andean men’s wear; several may have been part of a matched set. They embody important principles of the Chimú textile aesthetic, one being a love of combining different textures, some dense and sculptural and others so open and airy they are nearly invisible.