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Cineteca Nacional de Chile

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This exhibition displays the particular visions of creators who have been gaining prominence within the contemporary handicrafts made in Chile scene. United by a commitment to respect materials, their innovative designs and by having represented the country at the French biennial Révélations in 2022 -thanks to the support of the Crafts Department of the Ministry of Cultures, Arts and Heritage and the Directorate of Cultural Affairs of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs-, the works that make up this selection reflect a prolific current scene of male and female artisans.

Under the curatorship of Liliana Ojeda Legues, the works of the following artists will be exhibited: Adrien Canitrot – Soledad Christie Browne – Lamps From Chile (LFC): Paula Corrales, Mitsue Kido & Pilar Véjar – L&C Lab: Liliana Ojeda and Clarisa Menteguiaga – Jose Miguel Marty Lizana – Taller Memorias: Mercedes Nistal and Carmen Gloria Vivanco – Paola Moreno – Alfonso Moya – Lucas Nicolao – Atis Sáez – Marcela Undurraga – Constanza Urrutia Wegmann.

The traditional crafts are characterized by a continuity of “aesthetic and symbolic patterns […] whose original structures can be maintained over time, as well as reworked, but always retaining those distinctive elements that give them identity and a sense of belonging” (Chile Artesanía). The set of knowledge it encompasses is passed on from one generation to the next without a specific origin or declared authorship. By virtue of this generous handing down, traditional craftsmanship endures through time, incorporating, at the same time, new elements.

In contrast, contemporary craftsmanship is often associated with innovation, as a creative and reflexive practice that does not require a specific identity reference. Recently, however, a bill promoted by the Mincap’s Handicrafts Department was released that seeks to highlight the concept of “territorial identity” as a defining element of handicrafts, equipping them with values associated with environmentalism and sustainability.

Following the reading of the sociologist Richard Sennett, who sees the artisan as responsible for the material culture of a society, and artisan knowledge as an authentic good of social capital. For the author, knowledge and skills are accumulated and transmitted through social interaction, and are opposed to the degradation of consciousness generated by capitalist production. The pieces in the exhibition dialogue and wrap themselves in these premises.

La materia en cuestión highlights work processes closely linked to territories, where the creators take a position on the abrupt social changes we are experiencing and propose different ways of understanding the identity. The exhibition addresses both the selection, cultivation and treatment of natural elements and the development of techniques by the creators. It also presents strategic gestures that seek to highlight the power of the raw material, making creative and responsible use of it. In the works exhibited, cultural identity is balanced with the contingency of a present that looks to the future, maintaining effective links with local and international markets and projecting itself to audiences with diverse backgrounds and sensibilities.

June 1 to July 30, 2023
Tuesday to Sunday | 10:00 a.m. to 7:30 p.m.

Design Gallery | Level -2
Free access

© Adrien Canitrot