Revitalizing Otavalo's Kichwa Cultural Museum
Project Launch: 12-7-18
The 21 families that co-own the Museo Viviente Otavalango (Living Museum Otavalango) have been arduously working for years to restore an old factory left in ruins and bring it to life as a "living museum" of Kichwa culture, tradition and language. This project proposal aims to sharpen the museum's economic development edge and transform it into a recognized landmark for both locals and tourists. This project will be carried out in a series of technical workshops focused on business development, "mingas" (community work projects), and a celebratory 1-day festival to commemorate the spring equinox and fulfill the museum's dream of continuing Kichwa cultural activities. The project will support the purchase of much-needed supplies that will be used long-term in the museum's operation. Results will include the creation of a photography exhibit showcasing Kichwa culture, the restoration of an unused building into a venue for local Kichwa bands and dance groups, and a colorful mural covering the exterior wall. The festival will occur during Pawkwar Raymi, or the spring equinox, which is a special Kichwa holiday. The festival will showcase ancestral knowledge, Andean folklore music, traditional dance, and favorite culinary dishes. In sum, this project is truly only the beginning as this museum grows into a flourishing landmark for Kichwa culture.