Limerick, Ireland
Patricia Belli, Crisálida II, 1998, garments sewn together, hung from an iron rod, ca. 180 x 140 x 30 cm, courtesy the artist

Patricia Belli

Nicaragua, b. 1964

Human impulses such as aggression, desire, fear, and compassion shape Patricia Belli’s ideas when investigating the binary oppositions that are part of our everyday lives: oppressor and oppressed, pleasure and pain. Using personal experiences from the present and the past, her work questions who we are and what control we have over our condition, especially when faced with significant events such as birth or death. Crisalida II (Cocoon II) (1998) is a textile piece made out of more than fifty pieces of second-hand women’s clothes and hangs loosely from an iron rod. When hung, the work resembles not only a cocoon but also uncannily appears as both a crucifix and a womb. Crisalida II, which references ideas to do with the home and domesticity, was developed through a compulsive need to sew garments together and functions like a curtain, a hide out, a nest, or a safe place. One wonders who the women were who once wore these clothes.

Patricia Belli uses a diverse range of media, with an emphasis on the crossover of mechanical and natural elements. Through this junction, she constructs ideas of unbalance. Belli founded the Space for Artistic Research and Reflection (EspIRA), an organisation for the training of critical and intuitive capacities of artists. EspIRA has had a decisive influence on Central American art. Belli exhibits regularly in Central America, South America, the United States, and Europe. A retrospective, anthological exhibition, curated by Miguel López, travelled to San José, Managua, and Guatemala City between 2016 and 2017.

(Text: 38th EVA International catalogue)


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