Colouring book 'The Bristol Colouring book' edited by The History Press 2016 (Reserved Rights)
Chantal Meza | 'Suspended traversal' | Graphite on paper | 2020
The piece "Suspended traversal" was selected to be Exhibited in a Collective Show at 'Centro Cultural España Juan de Salazar' (CCEJS), in Paraguay.
The opening was on the 13th of March 2021.
In the words of the Curator Sandra Dinnendahl:
“In its second edition Proyecto Enajenar / En Casa Ajena convenes a group of artists under the theme “margin”, a malleable word that can mean edge, limit and frontier, and at the same time time, occasion, profit, difference and approximation.
Each artist interpreted this theme according to her sensitivity with various and varied results. Groups by theme, aesthetics and materiality emerge from the collective, forming discursive flows through the exhibition space. From this concept, curatorship arises: position works that dialogue more with ones in close proximity and use them as bridges between more dissimilar works. In this way, the exhibition space is activated where the works are and where they are not. The empty spaces stage the conversations between two or more works. Subthemes emerge from these conversations as conceptual distillations. The following help us to navigate the discursive flows: the interior/domestic space, the public space, the human-political body, “typical” cultural elements and meta-materiality."
" In 2020 I took a children's coloUring and drawing book with the intention of sketching in it the manic lines that had arisen in my work as a result of the events of that year. It is a book with illustrations of iconic places in the City where I currently live; Bristol, United Kingdom. In its pages there is a sheet with the image and on the previous page a blank sheet to be able to interpret or represent some other figure or memory of your own experience in this City.
It was so that I found a way to be able to play freely with that radical change that was presented in 2020, to be able to venture to explore with pencil and paper in the 'comfort' of my home, not only an imposed confinement but also with the technologization of our lives marking The first illustration I chose was the representation of one of the most famous and representative structures of the City, 'The Clifton Suspension Bridge' which has been acclaimed as one of the s most important structures built during the Victorian era, and considered an important achievement and icon of Engineering.
But for me it represents something simpler, it is rather, the direct way home. A place that I go through in my daily life and that connects me with the City. I can't imagine my life without him.
Although the book itself is still in the process of being finished, it already has the first image created, described previously. For this I decided to make a short video of 4 minutes.
I think that at the moment the video would be the best option to be able to represent the idea in general."
The Exhibition was also a dynamic collaboration among the Artists. Each one of them engaged with the Artwork of the other and wrote a text to describe their piece.
Chantal engaged with the Artist Leticia Alvarenga, and the Artist Rebeca Benítez with Chantal's piece.
You can see the engagements below
Reflective text by Chantal Meza
The poetic patch
"Back to the chest" by Leticia Alvarenga
Where does the heart belong? What is the body? And where are things like pain located, but primarily that which is called love?
Throughout time humanity has found itself reflecting through art the strangeness of the human body, but above all the abstract and untouchable of the senses. Believing that the organs are the individual deposit of our emotions may not be so far from reality, we can think here of 'The Henry Ford Hospital' by Frida Kahlo in which we can observe the organs exposed and united through the cord of life, and although in this painting Frida guides us towards the abortion and the loneliness of her pain, in 'Volver al chest' motherhood has been transgressed, the body is not thus exposed, on the contrary, it indicates that it can be any body, a non-gender, because it is about going further, understanding that light belongs to everyone.
Knowing that we are human and not assembled machines fulfilling functions is part of the complexity of life itself. Fortunately, we are far from that mechanical nature, and Leticia Alvarenga stops us with her work to re-imagine our spirituality, to know that we are not doctors, to observe ourselves in the solitude of patching up our actions and meeting the other in an act of Resistance, not of Resilience, because life is not an acceptance of everything, the body, the mind and the senses are not of the world to snatch, we are not slaves who accept what is imposed, but humans who create, who are woven together and seeing each other incomplete are sought and resist with dignity. Returning to the centre is a poetic act; With these words, Leticia is describing the art of life.
In his work there is no exposed blood, only the patch of the heart to the skin, fitting it precisely on the sternum and not on the left of the chest makes us think that the 'order of things' is not what matters when it comes to the feel. Because maybe it's up to us to find the reason, the precise place.
Possibly at this point we will begin to remember certain images such as 'The Anatomy of the Heart' by Enrique Simonet, 'The Brutal Clinic' by Thomas Cowperthwait or the more classic 'The Anatomy Class' by Rembrandt. Our list could be endless, without a doubt the exploration in Art about the limits of the materiality of the body are immense, but the intimate look of 'Back to the chest' is what distinguishes it, we are not in a room full of scientists or doctors dissecting and analyzing the body, we are facing the intimacy of a human being who explores his organs, who does not understand science, only feels and knows where and how to touch, explore, inflict pain or heal, connect with the immaterial, but not only that if not that it is an act of control, not a brutal and analytical one, but one of certainty of knowing that she is sure of her determination to live.
Reflection text by Rebeca Benítez Sosa
"Suspended trasversal" by Chantal Meza
In the eye remains the Suspense traversed by a story split in turn by other suspense, planes, forms, points of reference, everyday life, existences suspended again, in turn, in the fluid of the uncertainty of time in the one that emerged
The bridge inevitably invites to be crossed, advancing on the line, blurs a possible horizon and subtly submerges in another perspective, watery, liquidly irresistible. Crossing implies a crossing of its own, in its becoming points, bridges, departure and arrival, it also becomes states of impermanence. The bridge is supported by solid structures thus avoiding the liquid surface that causes suspense in black and white celebrating the nuances.
In the work, this possibility is blurred. The movement generated by the curves, the focus and blur of the eye that looks at what will later be looked at, makes one feel in a hypnotic dance of sensations, always liquid and without margins. As when halfway through, we stop to observe the continuous flow of water, the image seems to reflect its antipode, which now blurs the contour that separates the sky from the earth and the walker's bridge.
Going through this work with the eye also blurs the sensory contours of the body, since, in moments, one, body-memory, becomes those blank pages of the book, now also liquid and deformed, is drawn as a bridge, in suspense, of what that goes through
I have inhabited this work as water is inhabited: sensations floated and I drowned, in the depth achieved by coexistence, all pretense of certainty; I jumped freely into the metaphors of water and all the words they brought to shore.