|the 5ta Bienal Internacional de Arte Textile in Buenos Aires, by Monique Beauregard||| Print ||
Americas Sinuosas/Interseccion de Extremos –Amériques sinueuses/Intersections d’extrêmes
at the 5ta Bienal Internacional de Arte Textile in Buenos Aires, Argentina.
Americas Sinuosas/Interseccion de Extremos – Amériques sinueuses/Intersections d’extrêmes is the second experience to join Montréal and Buenos Aires textile artists in an exhibition shown in both cities.
The first one was called Palabras Cruzadas – Mots croisés. It was the idea of then students at the Centre Design & impression textile, Ana Victoria Stanley and Florencia Caligiuri both Portenos and a friend of theirs in Buenos Aires, Cristina Blanco. It took place at the Feria de Diseno in Buenos Aires in July and August 2007 and at the Centre des Textiles contemporains, in Montréal, in October of the same year.
Six months after, Ana Victoria asked me if we could do a second venue, this time in Montréal and then in the spring 2009 in Buenos Aires, since it would stage the 5ta Bienal Internacional de Arte Textil, and maybe we could be part of it. It was to be held from the end of March until the end of April 2009.
The exhibition in Montréal was at Galerie T, the Centre design & impression textile’s gallery. Artists from Buenos Aires were : Gabriela Candioti, Constanza Martinez, Claudia Mazzola, Raquel Podesta and Rosa Skific. From Montréal : Mylène Boisvert, J.Penney Burton, Helle Derrick, Danny Gauthier, Lyne Girard, Nicole Panneton, Ana Victoria Stanley, Nathalie Tremblay and myself.
For the occasion we had invited Rosa Skific, a well know artist and textile designer and a former professor of textile design at the Universitad de Buenos Aires. She gave a four-day workshop on creativity in printed textiles.
Ana Victoria Stanley
As for the Biennal it was organized by the World Textile Art, a non-profit organization based in Miami. It had set up four previous biennals, twice in the USA, in Venezuela and Costa Rica mainly presenting juried exhibitions of Latino-American artists.
The 2009 Buenos Aires Biennal would prove to be an enormous textile rendez-vous. Laura Ferrando, president of the Biennal, invited us to be part of it in the section Muestras en Galerias (work in galleries). I was asked to talk at the Museo del Traje, about the experience we had have with the first Buenos Aires- Montréal exchange. I was also to give a workshop on dévoré to some 20 artists at the Muchatela Taller, Constanza Martinez’ textile design and print workshop. Our exhibition would be presented as from 2 April.
The Biennal schedule was quite something to follow. I had been to Buenos Aires once before. I had taken some Spanish language course this year. At least I could understand a bit more of the conversations. With a good map and the help of taxi driver’s I got around in this huge city (14 millions hab.).
J. Penney Burton
Having given my lecture at the Museo del Traje and my workshop I was ready to explore the museums and galleries. I was ready for all these openings and not so private, private views. On the evening of the workshop, we all went to the opening of ‘’Alto Puntaje’’ at the Bolsa de Comercio (Chamber of Commerce). This was more or less ‘’un salon des refusés’’. These works hadn’t been chosen to be in ‘’the’’ exhibition that was to take place in the Palais de Glace.
As always in this kind of show I admired quite a few good pieces. I particularly enjoyed Maria Boggiano’s work. She explores felt and thermofusion, very colourful in a play-like fashion. Maybe it was a bit too design oriented to the liking of the jury.We were then off to ‘’Arte Textil/Precursores’’. This was a tribute to a small group of artists that had paved the way to textile art in Argentina in the ’60 and ’70.As well as working with the traditional techniques and fibers, it was also a beginning for the use of plastic, acrylic, nylon and other synthetic fibers. These artists’ research in colours, techniques, concepts was the start of a new era in textiles in Argentina.
Being in Buenos Aires, I couln’t miss the MALBA (Museo del Arte Latinoamericano de Buenos Aires) my second visit, a must.Rosa Skific guided me through the exhibitions which gave me some background about the social and political atmosphere of the different eras, the works and the artists.Another interesting venue was PuroDiseno, a craft and design show, that was taking place at the Pabellon Azul de la Rural, the garden of Buenos Aires, Very young in it’s presentation and gathering mostly young people also and for that matter quite different from our craft shows in Canada.
Having met Julia Rossi who was in charge of the presentation at the gallery Barbarie Arte Contemporaneo in San Antonio de Areco, she invited me to join them for the Sunday opening. A 100km drive from BsAs. A very warm Sunday in a beautiful countryside.
The work of Tamara Burlando was very moving. ‘’El vestido de Noa’’ about the lost of an unborn child. One felt almost like a voyeur by looking at it and I was unable to take a photograph of it.Again some work from Maria Boggiano and the felt of Julia Rossi where amongst the most interesting pieces.
The 1st April was D-day : the opening of the exhibition at the Palais de Glace.The organisers had received 467 propositions from 48 countries. The international jury included : Beatrijs Sterk, director of ETN and Textilforum magazine, from Holland ; Gracia Cutuli, Argentinian textile artist and Lilian Llanes, director of the Bienal de la Habana, Cuba. They choose 102 works from artists of some 30 countries. A very large crowd gathered at the Palais de Glace’s 1st floor. So many people interested in textiles!!! The set-up was made so one could quite easily visit the whole exhibition by theme and space.
Prizes were given to ‘’A custodia’’ by Beatriz Chaaf-Giesser from Germany, ‘’Black-Out’’ by Maria Ortega Galvez from Spain and ‘’Elisa Vida Mia’’ by Magali Sanchez Vera from Uruguay. Several mentions went to Anna Goebel (Poland), Anne Elizabeth (USA), Berta Jakubowicz (Argentina), Julia Mensch (Argentina) and Rasma Noreikyte (Lithuania).
The choice was quite eclectic, showed very different trends, gave a sentiment of universality and proposed some important works of trends to come.
At the same time, on the ground floor, ‘’Desde Lo Textile : Hacia nuevos Territorios’’ was also taking place. This show was designed and set with works which “cross over boundaries, moving without prejudice while disturbing, subverting and agitating all old notions about decorative art, lesser art, or hand-crafts or objects of personal use”. It is about creations of high conceptual and material richness, which within its own porosities interweaves and interacts with other disciplines such as acting and performing and architecture. It was curated by Florencia Battiti who had invited some 20 artists mostly from Latin and South America to explore these new boundaries.
After this frenzy, in the evening of the 2nd April, we had our own exhibition at Muchatela Taller, in a long whitewash corridor we exhibited our work leaving it to speak for itself. The result was great. People filled the place. Commentaries were very positive. During that day there was a meeting at the Museo Nacional de Arte Decorativo. A meeting of all artists present as well as a talk with Beatrijz Sterk, Paulina Ortiz, president of World textile Art and Tana Sachs about communication, interaction, between international associations, cultural centres and artists.Beatrijz Sterk also spoke about cooperation and culture in Europe. I was asked to speak about the work of all Montrealers present in the ‘’Amériques sinueuses’’ show. This gave a good-hand promoting it.
There was only a day left before my return to Montréal. I wanted to see the 13ta Salon de Minitextiles at the CAAT (Centre Argentino de Arte Textil). I knew the place from my former stay in Buenos Aires. It was packed with people, there was a warm welcome and very warm temperature. One could see a good survey of the main Argentinian artists’ work. During my stay, I met a lot of people involved one way or another in textile art. I cannot recall all the names. Susan Avila Taber (USA), Denise Blanchard (Chili) Ana Zlatkes, Laura Ferrando, Isabel Ditone, Rosa Skific from Argentina to name but a few. They were very generous in sharing ideas and discussing their work.
After being part and seeing these presentations I can only feel that we are part of the same world, the world of textiles. Textiles in all it’s uses, in all it’s meanings, in all it’s expressions. There isn’t much difference between our work and other’s. It is all a matter of creativity, feeling, research, ideas, expression, environment and social issues.Textiles is an art form not to be neglected, an art form as important as others. In Buenos Aires one had the feeling it was recognized as such.
The 2011 Biennal should take place in Spain.
Textile designer and artist
Director - Centre Design & impression textile, MontréalMy thanks to the Conseil des arts et lettres du Québec for awarding me a travelling grant.
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