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This work was made specifically for the exhibition Dia de Muertos A Matter of Life at the National Museum of Mexican Art, Chicago, Illinois as an offering to mother earth for its nurturing of all life. It is an abstracted representation of the Tree of Life, which honors the cyclical nature of our existence. An Ofrenda (offering or altar) made to remember and honor the dead, is usually temporary, however this one, because it is crocheted of plastic, may seem more permanent, as plastic lasts forever. It too has a cycle of existence, however. It will endure in this form just as plastic out in nature lasts for many years, but time and the elements will do their work and inevitably the plastic will break down into smaller and smaller bits and become one with the earth and the seas. It will unavoidably become part of the food we eat and water we drink. Perhaps the earth would not want to have this plastic permeate its body, but the earth cannot stop it. Only we can.
I collect the everyday discards of contemporary life. These materials are versatile enough to utilize in a multitude of forms intrinsic to my central interests—fibers, textiles, their design, the role of textiles in culture and the art canon and environmental concerns. I situate my work in the colors, patterns and geometries of domesticity and a throwaway culture.
Photo credit: Cibele Vieira
Ofrenda, 2019. Crocheted plastic bags, aluminum wire. 96" x 69"