W139 Tracksuit, San Lucas Tolimán, Guatemala

2008 - 2009

To celebrate their 30th anniversary, W139, an artist-run space in Amsterdam, Netherlands commissioned Associate Professor and DEED co-founder Pascale Gatzen and Ajkem’a Loy’a to produce a “W139 tracksuit”. Working over several months, Pascale and the artisans of Ajkem’a Loy’a experimented with weaving and pattern prototypes to collaboratively develop women’s and men’s tracksuits. Funding also supported workshops in basic computer and email usage for the artisans and run in Guatemala, led by DEED director Cynthia Lawson.

To finalize the tracksuits, Pascale and students from the Fashion area of study in the Integrated Design program at Parsons cut and hand-sewed the 8 limited edition tracksuits – embroidering the back panels of the top with the names of all the artisans and students who worked on the project.

Artisan Group

  • Ajkem’a Loy’a


  • Alexa Stark, Parsons, Integrated Design
  • Isabella Amstrup, Parsons, Integrated Design
  • Andrea Diodati, Parsons, Integrated Design
  • Colleen Schaffer, Parsons, Integrated Design


  • Pascale Gatzen, Associate Professor of Fashion Design, Parsons
  • Cynthia Lawson, Associate Professor of Integrated Design, Parsons


  • W139 –  Commisioned the track suits

Blog Posts

In March 2009 I returned to San Lucas Toliman to continue working  with the women of Ajkem’a Loy’a on the tracksuit we are developing for W139 ,  one of the main

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possibilities 2

close-up of one of the experiments of Catherina the experiments of Catherina with the W for the top part of the pants Sandra experimenting with a dark color and more

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a design that Romelia and Cindy collaborated on all women are weaving real size now, no more small experiments Gloria and I collaborate on a design for the sleeves of

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Designing 139

In the afternoon, from 2pm to 6pm, I work with the other women of Ajkem’a Loy’a,  Sandra, Romelia, Catherina, Ruth, Gloria, Hilda y Cindy experimenting with weaving. At 4 pm

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Sewing and pattern making

Every morning from 9am to 12 pm, I work with Mayda in the shop of Ajkem’a Loy’a,  designing the shape, making the patterns and sewing the prototypes for the track

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A track suit for W139

In the coming two weeks the women of Ajkem’a Loy’a and I will develop the first proto type of a track suit for W139. W139, one of the main art spaces

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