Mending

Feminine Spirit
February 27, 2021 - March 26, 2021
Cra. 16 No. 86b-31

As she has been doing for several years now, Consuelo Manrique continues to think about women who have been affected by war. Through her drawings and paintings, she has embodied their pain and their slow process of healing and forgiving, but never of forgetting. In her latest works, Manrique is mending their wounds with golden thread and basting stitching, weaving words into an illegible language that comes close to the delicate texture of lace, which speaks of sensitivity and of the female spirit.

This time, however, something unexpected occurred. Her mother’s kerchiefs, which have nearly disintegrated, leaving behind imprints of their own memory, have joined her strokes and basting stitching. And what is most surprising is the presence of remnants of lace that belonged to her wedding dress, which are sewn unto the canvas and covered in a different shade of red that, unlike ever before, evokes blood. These pieces of lace exist within the cloth like tinted gauzes that denote pain and loss, but that heal; are mended with goldleaf, in the way that the Japanese, through the art of kintsugi, repair broken ceramics. Through this art, they aggrandize scars in a ceremonial and aesthetic way, as Manrique also does in these moving paintings.

In referring so much to other bodies, to “Silent Bodies,” who heal their wounds, Consuelo Manrique has come to name her own. Perhaps without even noticing, she has allowed it to speak of pain and healing.