The Awajún or Aguaruna in Spanish, are an indigenous people of the Peruvian Amazon, who speak Awajún or Aguaruna. Historically, they lived primarily on the banks of the Marañón River, a tributary of the Amazon in northern Peru near the border with Ecuador. Currently, they possess titled community lands in four of Peru’s regions: Amazonas, Cajamarca, Loreto, and San Martin. According to Peru’s 1993 Census the Awajún numbered approximately 45,000. World Census data for 2000 lists their population at just over 38,000.
The Consejo Aguaruna Huambisa is widely regarded as the primary political entity representing the Awajún and Wampis peoples. The Awajún, through the Consejo Aguaruna Huambisa, played a central role in national level indigenous movements in Peru and in the founding of the Coordinating Body of Indigenous Organizations of the Amazon Basin (COICA), which represents Amazonian peoples from all over the South American continent.
Through the network Deep in Forests, designer Violeta Villacorta met Awajún-Wampis representative Ambrocio Uwak in Tambopata, Madre de Dios. He connected her with artisans from the Women’s Association of the Nor-Oriental Awajún Region (AMARNO) in the community of Urakusa.
In July 2011, upon their invitation, Violeta visited Urakusa to meet with the Awajún artisans. It was a short two-day stay that began their partnership. The Awajún artisans are a highly talented and skilled group of women who are devoted to their artistry, eager to share their work with the world. They take long boat journeys on the Marañón River to the nearest town to send their goods to us. The Collection section on this website includes exquisite traditional Awajún accessories and collections made with seeds and other plant fiber materials, developed in partnership with Awajún artisans: Awajún, Etsa, Núgkui, Yumi, Muun & Mara collections. Visit our online Shop to purchase Awajún Amazon rainforest eco fashion, jewelry and accessories.
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