Fragment of a band with bird design
Early Tiwanaku style, south coast of Peru
Early Intermediate Period, 200-400 CE
Camelid-hair wrap and weft; tapestry weave, interlocking joins with chain-looped embroidery
24 x 8 cm
Fowler Museum at UCLA. Gift of Mr. and Mrs. Herbert L. Lucas, Jr. X86.2913
Source: Elena Phipps, The Peruvian Four-Selvaged Cloth. Ancient Threads / New Directions. Fowler Museum Textile Series, No. 12, Los Angeles, 2013
Three of the four selvages have been preserved.
Tiwanaku culture extended from the Lake Titicaca highlands to the south coastal region of Peru. Images of birds were among its primary icons of power – often shown attending a staff-holding deity figure well known from the stone monument called the Gateway of the Sun. In this tapestry fragment, possibly part of a headband, the bird stands in profile. It has a powerful crooked beak, massive legs, markings around the eyes, tricolored tail feathers, and an elaborate feather on top of its head. One end of this fragment is complete with rows of chain-looped embroidery.