For the Commonplaces project in Peru, Miguel A. López has selected the artist and activist Olinda Silvano and Non Shinanbo, a collective of thirty artisan mothers from the Shipibo community of Cantagallo in Lima. Olinda is one of the co-founders of Cantagallo, formed in 2000 along the Rimac River. Cantagallo is the home of Lima’s largest Shipibo community—formed largely as the result of migration from the Amazon in the late 1990s. Olinda has been working for over twenty years promoting the creative production of numerous women artists and artisans who transmit the Amazonian experience, traditions, and struggle for political rights in Peru through weaving, drawing, and murals.
The project is based on a collaboration with Olinda and the collective that will unfold between late 2021 through 2022. Specifically, the collective is invited to record, through different languages and media (including textiles, painting, song, and video) their experience during the social, political, and health crises experienced over the past two years in Peru. Cantagallo was seriously affected at the beginning of the COVID pandemic, when little was known about the virus. In a context where many indigenous urban populations were left with little or no access to basic resources and health care, it was precisely mutual care, community support, and the use of traditional medicinal practices, that allowed the community to attempt to survive the emergency.