Elder woman from Kuna Yala, Panama

Posted on 03. Sep, 2010 by in Blog, Portraits

Lori Burnett Montreal, Montreal photographer, Quebec photographer, photography

This photo was taken during a family trip to Panama in the winter of 2007. The woman in the photograph is one of the elders of one of many Kuna Yala island communities who speak only their own native tongue and who live much like their ancestors have for the past hundred years. This lovely woman spent her days sewing exquisite multi layered colourful cloths called molas which are then incorporated into the blouses worn by women and young girls or sold as decorative squares to tourists to be used as placemats or other household items. She also crafted elaborate beaded bracelets which are worn tightly wound around the lower legs and halfway up the arms of most of the women. Yet another talent she had mastered was the making of ceramic pots and other cooking tools. All these items are available for purchase to visitors like ourselves who are granted a private meeting in her modest home where we spent several hours looking through her creations and selecting several to buy and bring back home.