Molas Collection on Display at Gallery

Hattiesburg, Miss., October 9, 2012 - The Lucile Parker Gallery at William Carey University will display “From Eden to Eternity: Interpretations of Bible Stories in Reversed Embroidery from the Molas Collection of Sandra and Bob Bowden,” a collection of folk art in fiber from the San Blas Islands, Oct. 2-26.

A reception for the exhibit will be held Oct. 11 from 5 until 6 p.m. at the gallery. Dr. Garry Breland, vice president for academic affairs, will present a brief gallery talk at 5:30 p.m.

The exhibit features 40 stunning molas, the signature textile craft of the Cuna Indian women of the San Blas Islands, an archipelago of more than 300 islands on Panama’s northern coast. Developed to provide elaborate front and back fabric panels for the traditional blouse worn by the women, the technique involves a process of reverse appliqué which combines layers of brightly colored fabrics stitched together and then cut into intricate patterns, exposing colors from underlying layers. The top layer is typically treated with both direct appliqué and embroidery to create an even richer surface.

Animals and marine life are common motifs for the molas, as are geometric and mythological patterns. A good quality mola panel may take a month or more to make and requires 40 or more hours of work.  The molas in the exhibit feature whimsical interpretations of biblical stories and symbols. Every piece reflects a love of color and overall design. The exhibit has been previously featured at prestigious locations such as Yale University.

For more information or to arrange a special hours or a group tour, call 601-318-6192. The Lucile Parker Gallery is open 1-4 p.m. during the week except during university holidays and the summer.