Shout-Out - Guatemala

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05.06.2024

La Nueva Fábrica presents Edgar Calels' Ru Raxal qa Rayb'äl (The Green of our desire)

Edgar Calel anchors his work in the Mayan Kaqchikel worldviews that stem from family and community life in his hometown of Chi Xot (San Juan Comalapa)

La Nueva Fábrica (LNF) is pleased to announce Ru Raxal qa Rayb’äl (The Green of Our Desire), Edgar Calel’s first institutional solo exhibition in Guatemala. Edgar Calel anchors his work in the Mayan Kaqchikel worldviews that stem from family and community life in his hometown of Chi Xot (San Juan Comalapa). His practice honors and upholds the spiritual, physical, and emotional nourishment and communal knowledge that his land, family, and ancestors bestow upon him. His subtle and at times humorous practice works through strategies that are conceptual and sensorial at once.


Ru Raxal qa Rayb’äl
responds to LNF’s 2024-2025 exhibition cycle through a series of living and ever-changing installations that bring into proximity diverse notions and practices of healing. The resulting project stands as an offering created by Calel to welcome LNF’s publics into a space of contemplation and sentipensar (sensing-thinking) that activates multiple forms of sense-making. The artworks and installations presented stem from, in the artist’s words, “Practices that were never forgotten by the communities in our territories. These practices never ceased to exist and continue to be at the center of life.” The resulting artworks are invitations to pursue forms of intimate, communal, and societal healing.

The title of the exhibition refers to the desire to “return” to a natural environment that is a source of knowledge, spirituality, nourishment, and protection, despite the plundering of land, water, and landscape that has been constitutive of 500 years of colonial dynamics in Guatemala and beyond. Ru Raxal qa Rayb’äl offers a path of interconnected moments of contemplation and intimacy that are relational in nature. The exhibition does not seek to create a mere representation of spirituality to be consumed through the act of looking, but rather invites publics to come into proximity with forms of communal care based on reciprocity.

The project is curated by Edgar Calel and Ilaria Conti, LNF’s Executive Director, in collaboration with the Calel family and LNF’s team. A series of public programs will unfold throughout the exhibition to expand on the notions at the heart of the project and reinforce its reciprocal and participatory nature.

 

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