The word "mola" has several meanings for the Kuni people of Panama. It can be used to mean "cloth," or refer to a garment. It is also used to describe colorful handmade textiles that decorate women's clothing. Primarily made by women, these textiles' distinct designs are achieved with intricate stitching and applique, often featuring geometric patterns, birds, flowers, animals and cultural motifs.
This exhibition presents examples of mola from the collection of Elisabeth Hans, who amassed thousands of works over the course of around 30 years. In addition to the pieces is a comprehensive explanation of the motifs and designs, which include depictions of the Caribbean Sea, nature and the lifestyle of the Kuna. (Yukari Tanaka)