Meet VOZWOMAN Angela Lindvall, supermodel, mother, spiritual coach, and environmental activist. In 2017, we had the pleasure of taking Angela on a trip to Araucania, Chile, to meet Mapuche weavers and immerse ourselves in the beauty of the countryside. Our itinerary was the perfect combination of nature experience and cultural immersion, and most importantly, Angela meeting the weavers in their homes and sharing the wisdom and art of weaving tradition.
While in Chile, we sat down with Angela to discuss her experience during the trip, the connection she developed with the Mapuche weavers, and plan for an upcoming collaboration with VOZ.
Photography by Ben Draper (@bendraperphotography)
Styling by Stella Greenspan (@stella_greenspan)
Angela, tell us a little bit about how you discovered VOZ and how you came to become a part of our story?
I was in New York and a friend brought me to the VOZ store on Elizabeth street, and I was just astonished by the... the feeling of the garments. I was like "Wow, the feeling, you really feel something special in this." Then I began to learn the story of the Mapuche people, the weavers that created the garments, and Jasmine's vision behind the company and how she started it, and I was just blown away.
Angela at Casa VOZ during a collaborative design session with VOZ weaving partners Marisol, Pascuala, and Veronica.
What does it mean to you to be a VOZWOMAN?
Being a VOZWOMAN is a an honor, that my voice matters, but I think the voice of a woman can change the world. I do believe that women coming together can heal the planet. I believe that we as individuals healing ourselves and understanding our own individual power and influence has such an effect on a larger whole, so being able to use my ability to have a voice and to share the story of VOZ to a larger audience means a lot to me.
About town in Nueva Imperal, the cultural center of the Mapuche in Araucania. We had an amazing dinner at Sumpall Leuwfu, run by a local female Mapuche entrepreneur, Rosa Alejandra Curiqueo Bastias.
Tell us a little bit about your experience coming to Chile working with the women, what is your experience been like here?
Wow! Coming to Chile has been just such an amazing experience! I didn't know what to expect. I kind of had an idea in my head, but when I arrived, what I saw was people that are so connected to the earth, connected to the cycles of nature. I see the agriculture, and the beauty of living in connection with the earth, with the animals, with the food, with the raw materials, the way people live on their farms. And it's really something I desire. I feel that we've become so disconnected from the simplicity of the Sun coming up in the morning and our honest work through the day, and the Sun going down in the evening while we rest. And just that beauty the circadian rhythms, the natural rhythms of the human being. We've become so addicted to stimulation, and so busy and looking for outer things to try to fulfill us, that we've become very stressed out and very disconnected from our truest nature. And what I see in Chile, especially with the Mapuche people and the way they live, is a rhythm with our natural cycle which is something that we've forgotten and something for us to remember.
A moment at Casa VOZ with Angela.
And how did you feel that natural rhythm and how did you feel the experience when you worked with the Mapuche weavers of VOZ to start designing your own collection with us?
The conversations with the women have been one of the most beautiful parts of the trip. Just sitting in the circle as women and sharing our thoughts and our feelings about us as individuals, about us as human beings, about us as mothers, about the way the world is today, and understanding that weaving is a sacred ancient art. This is part of humanity and the story telling, and the tradition that's been passed down through the lineage is where the beauty of the whole story of VOZ is. It's in the... the history of the people, and it's in their hands weaving these beautiful symbols that empower us. And I also really appreciated how even though we're very different, we come from different cultures and different backgrounds we are the same, our hearts are the same.
Angela wears the Pillan Dress in front of the Mocho Volcano in La Araucanía, Chile.
What are you inspired to make with the Mapuche weavers of Chile?
We began to talk about what symbol we would want to create with our collaboration collection for VOZ. We talked about what we felt women needed and desired today, and we wanted to create a symbol that would really awaken the inner power of a women, that acknowledges her beauty from within. Part of the beauty was asking the women what would this symbol look like and to hear Marisol say: "Well I see fruits and flowers as a symbol of the Earth and fertility and the symbiosis of, you know, man and nature", but then to say "I feel we should ask the elders, because they have more wisdom and experience." Then Veronica started to do a sketch and she showed us the diamond and how that is the connection of the community and showing us the swirls that connect all of us together and that represents power from within that connects us to the whole. So I am so excited that, you know, there's so much depth to this story, it's not just the garment. It's the story of... of human beings and our connection to the earth and, hopefully, some sort of symbolism and inspiration for our future as humanity.
Photo from the lobby of Hotel Antumalal in Pucón, Chile, where we stayed overlooking Chile's Great Lakes.
What's one thing you're gonna take home with you?
After coming to Chile I'm one hundred percent for sure that I want to have a little farm house, just like the people here, with my animals, and that the richness of life. Success and value is not in material things. It's not in your prestige or your external success. It's... it's right here, we have it all. It's in the earth, it's in the food that we eat, it's in the community and the people that we are connected with. It's really quite simple.
Hiking and photoshoot at Huilo Huilo Biological Reserve and dinner at Nothofagus Hotel, a magical hotel nestled in the Huilo Huilo forest.
In the countryside surrounding Nueva Imperial meeting new friends in nature.
Is there anything else you would like to share with us?
I learned about patience and taking your time before you speak from the women there, and to really sit back and be a good listener. Cause we move in such a fast pace world we're ready to cut someone off before they've even finish their thought, or get our view point in right away. So, you know, that's what I want to take home with me is to really rest more in patience and be in the moment.
I'm so grateful to be part of this process that has existed now for some time and to work together as women, as people, to weave this story, share it with the world and it's really an honor to be part of it.
At the home of VOZ artisan partner Ernestina, marveling at the latest designs on her loom.
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Shop Angela's Look
Chenille Blanket Shawl
Double V Slip