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Migrating Textiles, An Unexpected Benefit
Benefit Sale

Fri, Sat, Feb 3, 4

Jan. 29, 2023

by Lena Bartula

With her dying breath, Liliana Gaynor told Jean Montgomery, "There are some black plastic bags in the top of the closet. Those are for you." Later, upon opening them, Jean discovered textiles collected during Liliana's journeys of 40 years, in Guatemala and around the world.

Liliana V. Gaynor, born in Serbia in 1943 of diplomat parents and grandparents, traveled the world many times over. She spoke six languages. Everyone who knew her enjoyed hearing stories from her adventurous world travels.

Dr. Liliana Gaynor was a Physician of Obstetrics & Gynecology, with a large practice in Chicago. Specializing in women's reproductive health and childbirth, she delivered more than 6000 babies in an era when few women were working in what was then a man's field. She did not give up easily. For that her patients loved and respected her.

A prolific watercolor artist, Liliana painted what she saw as she traveled the world. She also collected art and textiles from around the world, mostly from Guatemala. Upon retiring from her practice, she chose San Miguel de Allende as her full-time residence, where she lived for over 30 years until her death in 2020.

What if you were gifted with a large collection of something you know nothing about, and there was also no written record to tell you the stories of that collection? This is exactly what happened to Jean when her friend Lilian passed away.

I didn't know Jean at the time Lilian died. So, it was serendipitous that she mentioned this gift to a friend who knew me and my passion for Guatemalan textiles. Thus began our plan for a sale, a plan soon interrupted by the Covid lockdown announced the day she was bringing the treasures to me.

In life, there are no coincidences. The timing of this sale is significant. Liliana's collection, representing what she loved about countries to the south of us, comes at a time when the citizens of those countries are escaping their respective borders and migrating north. I am sure that Lilian would appreciate knowing how much she is now giving back, through the sale of her collection, to those into whose lands she was welcomed.

Jean Montgomery and I now welcome the public to view and purchase Liliana's treasures, with a portion of the proceeds going to help build the new Centro Cultural de Humanos Derechos, a project of Albergue de ABBA, a center for refugees in Celaya. The new Centro will be a long-term care facility. ABBA is an A.C., a non-governmental organization in Mexico that receives a big portion of its funding from the Latin American Relief Fund.


A Benefit Sale of Textile Treasures
Friday, Saturday, February 3, 4, 12-5pm
La Huipilista Artspace, Julian Carrillo 1, Guadalupe 415.111.3039


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