Wednesday, 4 June 2014

Futurismo Ancestral: An Offering to Peru

Futurismo Ancestral was a recent exhibition at Somerset House celebrating Peruvian and Andean folklore and tradition.
The installation was created by A(by)P in collaboration with graffiti artist Sixe Paredes who reinterprets traditional craft
techniques with a contemporary twist to create an overall mesmerizing display of South American aesthetics.

The show compiles a mixture of expansive work including hanging tapestries, eerily alert woven balaclavas, curiously shaped
ceramics and skeletal totems; all tied together using a fluorescent palette of shocking pink, acid yellow, lime green and
vermillion. This overwhelming colour scheme gave all the items displayed a teasingly tactile quality which made it really
hard for me to resist the urge to stroke, grab or rub myself against everything. 

Interlaced with the graphic dots and zigzags dominating the surface of every item were dangling tufts of knots and wooden beads.
This lead me to imagine these items in motion, chiming and jingling whilst being used in some ritualistic dance or masquerade.
I'm often told some of the more immersive Nino Paulito projects inspire a similar reaction and it felt pleasantly refreshing to now
be on the receiving end of that experience myself.

I loved the Futurismo Ancestral show, so much I actually visited three times during it's criminally short 6 day residence.
Each time I went I'd discover another detail hidden within it's articulate construction. Sixe Paredes did a fantastic job of
enlivening the basement area of Somerset House and I was especially impressed in the way he successfully used the space
to add an extra layer of mystic and wonder to it's already atmospheric architecture. I've become an instant fan and will eagerly
look forward to whatever projects both Sixe Paredes and A(by)P are involved in the future.

Nino Paulito