“Death is always near us, and it’s a freeing force that gives life its pulse.” —Cecilia Vicuña
Living in exile from her native Chile, Cecilia Vicuña works at the intersection of art and poetry, where both, she says, “find a way to expand into the limitless.”
In this video from the Brooklyn Museum, the New York–based artist discusses her Andean heritage as well as her deep interest in textiles, which culminated last year in an exhibition titled Disappeared Quipu. In South America, quipus were an ancient mode of communication and memory-keeping in the form of knotted cords—a connective language that was outlawed by Spanish colonizers. Vicuña incorporated some of these centuries-old textiles into her exhibition at the Brooklyn Museum, whose pre-Columbian collection she calls one of the treasures of the world.