Initiated through an informal meeting between filmmaker Cecilia Araneda, interdisciplinary artist Praba Pilar, and visual artist Monica Martinez back in 2014, Mujer Artista came together to create space for the experiences of Winnipeg-based Latin women artists working in visual art, film, and dance/performance. Now including Carolina Araneda, Francesca Carella Arfinengo, Alexandra Garrido, Mariana Muñoz, Camila Schujman and Ilse Torres, the collective acknowledges that while they operate under the umbrella of shared identity, their diversity is represented in a range of ages, artistic disciplines, family histories, and countries of origin.
Alexandra Garrido, Untitled, performance
Their exhibition Speaking In Tongues, now on view at aceartinc., takes as its starting point that this group also includes difference in language. They consider the role played by Indigenous languages as well as the Spanish and English spoken by collective members to varying degrees. The loose connections that exist between these artists are evident in the somewhat unfocused relationships between the artworks included in the show, but the collective does point out that this is a process-based exhibition. Performance and installation work dominate and the overall feel is one of a group playing, coming together, and finding its footing.
Martinez creates a collage of photographs and official documents on the gallery wall using raw clay as the means to hold it all together. Carella Arfinengo interweaves sheep’s wool from Quebec and Peru with cotton that has been dyed using Manitoba Oak bark and mud in her piece Placeholder. Both of these works highlight the importance of an identity’s connection to not only language but land as well. At a moment when immigration, border policy, and women’s rights are at the forefront of public discourse, this exhibition is an exciting first offering from what will hopefully continue to be an important collective of voices in our city.
There will be performances and artist talks at the gallery this Saturday, January 28 at 2:30pm.
Mujer Artista: Speaking In Tongues continues until February 3.
Jenny Western is a curator, writer, and educator who lives in Winnipeg. She can be followed on Twitter @WesternJenny.
Comments (newest first) +click to add comment