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Madame Mariza Bensurto, the Vice President of the Board of the League of San Francisco Consular Corps, invited members of the League to view an exhibit on pina textiles at the Lacis Museum of Lace and Textiles in Berkeley on Wednesday, 03 May 2017 as part of the Philippine Consulate General’s activities celebrating the 50th Anniversary of ASEAN.

The League of San Francisco Consular Corps visit the pina exhibit at the Lacis Museum in Berkeley.

The exhibit, entitled “Pina The Philippine Cloth of Pride, Endurance and Passion”, is part of the private collection of Mr. Jules Kliot, who owns the Museum.  He welcomed members of the League to Lacis, and showed his private collection of pina textiles, which he obtained from a diplomatic Italian family who was posted in the Philippines.

Mr. Jules Kliot, private collector and museum owner, explained how his collection of pina textiles grew, and the process of turning pineapple leaves into fibers woven to make a cloth.

Mr. Kliot explained the painstaking process of producing fibers from the leaves of pineapple plants, knotting together fibers from 100 leaves to make a cloth that is approximately two yards in length, and finally decorating it by embroidery or callado, a kind of filigree work wherein the threads are pulled together in an intricate pattern.

Mr. Kliot emphasized that pina weaving was all done by hand in the 18th century, adding that “the industry should be a source of pride for the Philippines”, who despite being colonized by the Spanish and Americans, still managed to put a unique Filipino touch to foreign influences and making them their own.

The collection includes christening gowns, pina flapper dresses, mestiza blouses, table covers and runners.  The exhibit formally opens on 07 July 2017, and will be on display until 04 May 2018.

(Left) The baro and panuelo were made in the 18th century. (Right) Dr. Ennie Arguelles, and Madame Mariza Bensurto with Mr. Jules Kliot

To promote Filipino products, Mrs. Bensurto distributed mango chips to the guests who attended the event, which included spouses of diplomats from Australia, China, India, Indonesia and Japan, and US support members who live in the San Francisco Bay Area.  END