Feel Your Own Shadow

Arandu ka 'aty - in the Guarani language it means wisdom, experience, a person who manages to feel his own shadow. 

Feeling one's own shadow is a project still in progress in watercolors and oils. The works are accompanied by poems that function as interlocutors with the paintings.
The series seeks to bring to light the shadow of the condition of motherhood in a world that tends to take it for granted. The artist explores the metamorphosis that a woman experiences in/through motherhood, devastating and wonderful at the same time. In essence, she seeks to reflect on the ambivalence of feelings that arise in the female exile of mothering.

The title of the series comes from the Guarani people of the Amazon where a wise person is one who is capable of feeling their own shadow. “The darkness encompasses everything,” says Carlos Papá Mirim Poty, a Guarani leader. “Mother darkness is where we come from when we are born and where we go when we die. Inside the mother's womb we have our first existence in darkness."

The artist wonders: What medicinal plants would my indigenous great-grandmother have given me after giving birth? What rituals would they have taught me to close my womb after giving birth or to welcome the new woman I became when I became a mother? The series serves as a "psychomagical act" to forget the postcolonial Western paradigm and remember the heritage that has historically been denied us. 

Necesito que me cuiden

al cuidar

Busco madres cómplices

que me saquen del exilio


Las encuentro en el parque

allí en la sombra de un árbol

nos reconocemos

hechas polvo contemplamos

la existencia

y nuestra resistencia

Juntas tiene sentido habitar

juntas tiene sentido criar

Ardida

mi vientre palpita

Humo blanco que me nubla

cuando sangro 

Me convierto en buitre

de vista panorámica

que mira con recelo

Soy sangre que fluye

dolor que siente

una ira antigüa

Lloro de rodillas y

me prendo fuego 

en la sombra

Seco mi sangre

me lamo la herida

Me sumerjo en aguas turbias

donde pierdo la cabeza

agotada de tanto dar

Me invade la sombra

de aguas profundas

mi cuerpo no da más

Pero antes de hundirme

me aferro a tu pequeña nuca

El olor me embriaga

Aspiro y aspiro

un placer antiguo

como el de flotar en aguas claras

de río y luna llena

When my eyes went blind

I sought refuge in the womb of the Earth

Grandmother trees who see suspended in time

Mothers of all mothers 

give me clarity to release the past

carry my future

and anchor the present

I can hear the river, my son 

every time I feed you

My body a moon that empties and fills itself

Thirst and hunger take over me my womb creates a river that I don’t control but that you provoke it is the river of all lives

Mother, the river tastes like you even in front of the shadows of an ashamed herd

Flesh soil stretched skin 

I knew to how to give birth

Still in a trance

I feel the presence

of my mother

Of your mother of all mothers

On the ground I recognize the infinite courage of all of them

No nací en tierra sin árboles

oil on canvas, 40 x 50 cm, 2021

A single physical form has several spirits and images into which it transforms. But these are only visible through dreams, says Davi Kopenawa, shaman and spokesman for the indigenous Yanomami. Only by dreaming can one understand the multiplicity of being that is in constant transformation. But then what is dreaming? Ailton Krenak, a Brazilian indigenous leader, ecologist and writer, describes it: “For some people, dreaming is getting out of reality, giving up the practicality of life. For others, however, life is meaningless if it is not made up of dreams, the place we go in search of songs, cures, inspiration and even solutions to practical problems that confuse and elude us during the day, but that arise in all its possibilities in the realm of sleep."

Tengo culebras

watercolor on paper, 35x27cm, 2021

For people like me, raised in a post-colonial Western paradigm, understanding reality from an indigenous perspective implies unlearning; let go, question, and rethink our ingrained conception of the world. It involves a monumental effort, if perhaps impossible, to transgress the limits of our world and thus enter a"Weltanschauung", a worldview that defies all Western logic and ontology.

The act of unlearning,while difficult and obtuse, is revealing. It implies letting go, questioning and rethinking the world to learn to feel one's own shadow; to connect with the dark, with the unknown. In my own experience, the act of unlearning became an intuitive process in which I entered the darkest depths of my being, where I see with the dream and where I connect with the moon to the infinite universe.Trusting and letting myself be carried away by this intuitive process led me to open new worlds and places, and suddenly, to feel my own shadow.

Tea, la luna en el centro de la tierra

watercolor on paper / 35 x 27 cm / 2021

La reina de la noche

oil on canvas / 35 x 50 cm / 2021

La piel de la selva

oil on canvas / 35 x 45 cm / 2021

Mãuyoma, las mujeres agua 

watercolor on paper / 27 x 35 cm / 2021

Pasaron tantas lunas

watercolor on paper / 27 x 35 cm / 2021

Espíritus que protegen 

watercolor on paper / 27 x 35 cm / 2021

Maternar juntas es mejor 

watercolor on paper / 27 x 35 cm / 2021

SENTIR LA PROPIA SOMBRA

Arandu ka 'aty - en lengua guaraní sabiduría significa persona que consigue sentir su propia sombra

Sentir la propia sombra es un proyecto aún en curso de acuarelas y óleos. Las obras van acompañadas de poemas que funcionan como interlocutores con las pinturas.

La serie busca sacar a la luz la sombra de la condición de la maternidad en un mundo que tiende a darla por sentada. El título de la serie proviene del pueblo guaraní de la Amazonía donde una persona sabia sabio es aquella que es capaz de sentir su propia sombra.

“La oscuridad lo abarca todo”, dice Carlos Papá Mirim Poty, un líder guaraní. “La madre oscuridad es de donde venimos cuando nacemos y adonde vamos cuando morimos. Dentro del vientre de la madre tenemos nuestra primera existencia en la oscuridad".

La serie sirve como “acto psicomágico” para olvidar el paradigma occidental poscolonial y recordar la herencia que históricamente nos ha sido negada. La artista se pregunta: ¿Qué plantas medicinales me habría regalado mi bisabuela indígena después de dar a luz? ¿Qué rituales me habrían enseñado para cerrar mi vientre después de parir o para dar la bienvenida a la nueva mujer en la que me convertí al volverme madre? 

La artista explora la metamorfosis que experimenta una mujer en/a través de la maternidad, devastadora y maravillosa al mismo tiempo. En esencia, se busca refelxionar sobre la ambivalencia de sentimientos que surgen en el exilio femenino de maternar.

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