Matea Morales Pablo lives in the small village of Chuacruz and has been a member of the Waqxaqi’ Kan Cooperative for over twenty years. After Matea’s husband died during the Guatemalan Civil War, she was left a single mother to care for her four children. In order to support her family, Matea joined together with the women in her community to create the Waqxaqi’ Kan Cooperative and seek a market for their weavings.
An experienced weaver, Matea first learned to weave from her cousin when she was nine years old. Matea recalls that when she was a child she had no interest in playing with sticks and mud like the other children, but would rather weave beautiful skirts and blouses for her dolls. Matea has passed down the tradition of backstrap weaving to her eldest daughter, and hopes to teach her two younger daughters in the near future. Matea witnessed brutality and faced loss during the war. Matea does not weave designs that represent war; she weaves colorful patterns of Maya significance.