Dance collar

Dance collar,

Cofán people,

Sucumbíos, Ecuador, 21st century

SP.2009.16.1

Who made this necklace? This dance necklace comes from Sucumbíos province in Northern Ecuador and was made by a woman or girl of the Cofán people.

What is it made of? It was made by cutting the brown Caimito seeds in half (Chrysophyllum venezuelenense) so that they make a rattling sound when the wearer moves or dances around. White Job’s tear seeds (Coix lacryma-jobi), and the contrasting black seeds of the Canna lily (Canna jaegeriana) add an eye-catching decorative trim. The seeds all form a fringe to the main collar which is made by knotting fibre from the Chambira palm (Astrocaryum chambira).

What is the girl in the photograph doing? Enigna is threading Caimito seeds onto a dance belt. She collects the seeds from plants growing in her garden and the surrounding forest.

Linked objects:

Women's bead aprons

Videos of dance collar being made and a Shuar dance: