Paraguay's textile tradition in contemporary art at MALBA

August 04, 2022 | nadiaevangelina

"Aó: Textile Episodes of the Visual Arts in Paraguay" brings together ten artists linked to Paraguay's textile practices, including Marcos Benítez, Félix Cardozo, Claudia Casarino, Feliciano Centurión, Arnaldo Cristaldo, Ricardo Migliorisi, Osvaldo Salerno, Karina Yaluk, Joaquín Sánchez and Mónica Millán. The exhibition, held at Malba, proposes a reading from two perspectives: the aesthetic creation linked to ancient local cultures and the intervention of everyday objects.

"El Gran Manto" by Ricardo Migliorisi

The history of Paraguay has always been crossed by weaving. Aó, a Guaraní word, refers to textiles in all their formats, from clothing to ornaments, including quilts and tapestries. "Paraguayan folk weavings tell the stories of the people who make them (mostly women) and use them in the domestic or work environment," said Lía Colombino, curator and director of the Museo del Barro's Museum of Indigenous Art.

Throughout the exhibition, the artists address central topics such as the role of women, work, readings of the conquest, popular art, and traditional knowledge through contemporary art. The works of Claudia Casarino, Mónica Millán, Arnaldo Cristaldo, Félix Cardozo and Joaquín Sánchez recover embroidery, lace and traditional fabrics to make women's labor emancipation visible.

Claudia Casarino

From the serie "El Vértigo de lo Lento" by Mónica Millán

"Piré" by Félix Cardozo

Arnaldo Cristaldo

"Sí, quería" by Joaquín Sánchez

The works of Marcos Benítez and Karina Yaluk use textiles as a weft to which plant or animal traces are attached. Meanwhile, in the center of the room, Ricardo Migliorisi's "El Gran Manto" (The great mantle) captures the viewers' attention due to its enormous size. It is a 12-meter-long patchwork made up of gobelins, which are carpets of French origin that reveal how tradition has been crossed by colonization. The pieces were intervened with texts from an inaccurate web translator, as a sort of textual and textile Babel.

Marcos Benítez

Karina Yaluk

"El Gran Manto" Part 2 by Ricardo Migliorisi

The artists Osvaldo Salerno and Feliciano Centurión detach themselves from the locals also in terms of tradition, but to remember the domesticity of the sewing machines or the massively used blankets, so close to their histories. Salerno, brings up the language, that other clothing that dresses us; and Centurión, embark on small stories of affection.

Detail of the work by Osvaldo Salerno

Feliciano Centurión

The exhibition "Aó: Textile Episodes of the Visual Arts in Paraguay" is an invitation to delve into Paraguay's art scene, as well as its history and, therefore, the working material of its artists. A common axis throughout the tour is the conception of weaving as writing and the overflowing of stories as a critical activity necessary to think a territory.


"Aó: Textile Episodes of the Visual Arts in Paraguay"
Location: Malba, Junín 1930, Av. Pres. Figueroa Alcorta 3415, C1425CLA CABA, Buenos Aires (Argentina)
Opening Date: 8th April 2022
End Date:1st August 2022
Working hours: Wednesday-Monday: 12pm to 8pm

Félix Cardozo 
Feliciano Centurión
Arnaldo Cristaldo
Karina Yaluk 

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