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Tunic of the Tiahuanaco (Túnica Tiwanaku)

By unknown - Pre-Columbian


Display Cases


Archaeology Museum
textile tunic from Tiahuanaco
Textile tunic of the Tiahuanaco on display at the remote San Pedro de Atacama Archeological Storage Museum. Photo courtesy of Museo Arqueológico RP Gustavo Le Paige SJ - San Pedro de Atacama, Universidad Católica del Norte.
Pre-Columbian textile “Túnica Tiwanaku”
Detail of Pre-Columbian textile “Túnica Tiwanaku”.


Museo Arqueológico RP Gustavo Le Paige SJ - San Pedro de Atacama, Universidad Católica del Norte, Chile


Weaving made with alpaca yarns


Display case: 63 in x 51 in x 6 in (160 cm x 130 cm x 15 cm)


Optium Museum Acrylic®

The Challenge

  • To protect and showcase a fragile and valuable textile during public display.

The Solution

Optium Museum Acrylic® Display Case

Allows viewers to clearly see the fragile textile rather than their own reflections.

99% UV blocking
Protects the textile from the most damaging light wavelengths, helping prevent fading and degradation.

Abrasion resistant
A durable hard coat protects against scratches from cleaning and general exposure to the public.

Acrylic is half the weight of glass and shatter resistant
Safeguards against injury and damage to object and visitors.

Anti-static protection exceeds that of glass
Makes for safer, easier fabrication and less cleaning.

The Work

The Tiahuanaco textile tunic is unique for its type; there is no other example in existence in such good condition. The piece is of exceptional beauty reflecting a confluence of visual and tactile qualities. Fine, and technically complicated, the weaving is made with alpaca yarns that offer a dense and, at the same time soft, surface. Its iconography and quality suggest its Tiahuanacan but foreign to the Atacama region. It has been suggested that it was probably created to be worn on special occasions by someone of great importance.

More Info

  • Learn more about the textile and present-day preservation plan in QuickVue.