This is a Andean textile technique that permits the creation of volumetric figures which was the result of the evolving process of the weaving techniques of the Paracas culture (700 – 100 AD) settled in the central-southern coast of what is today Perú.
Nevertheless, it is during the first period of the development of the Nazca culture (100 AD – 700 BC), also settled in the central-southern coast of what is today Peru, when this textile technique gains importance. It was used to make the finishes of textiles, weaving small three-dimensional figures.
Soledad Hoces de la Guardia and Paulina Brugnoli have defined this technique in the following manner: “Tubular Cross-Knit Looping: a structure that utilizes an element that is interlaced with itself, generating a loop and a cross that repeats itself horizontally. Each row of loops attaches itself to the previous loop. If a row is closed in a circle, a tubular structure can be formed.”
Beyond the embroidery, the Nazca weavers used the cross-knit looping technique to embellish the borders of important textiles. The cross-knit looping textile technique is related to both, the simple linking and the cross stitch, and it is a technique used to cover a fiber or the heart of a textile. The thread is passed with a needle around the cross of the top row, attaching itself occasionally to the base weaving, and creating a surface of vertical chains or braids.
The cross-knit looping technique is found in an ample range of forms, form flat tabs of a ingle color attached to the border of a textile, to three-dimensional figures in the border of textiles. The figures include birds, beans, fish, flowers and humans that frequently have canes or fans. These figures are complex and were formed with pre-fabricated components.
HOCES DE LA GUARDIA S. – BRUGNOLI P. 2006. PARAKAS: Bordando los colores del tiempo en el desierto. En: Awakhuni. Tejiendo la Historia Andina. Museo Chileno de Arte Precolombino, Santiago, pp. 28-35.
HOCES DE LA GUARDIA S. – BRUGNOLI P. 2006. NASCA: Fertilidad y exhuberancia. En: Awakhuni. Tejiendo la Historia Andina. Museo Chileno de Arte Precolombino, Santiago, pp. 36-43.
SAWYER A. 1997. Early Nasca Needlwork. Laurence King Publishing, Londo.