Carlos Eduardo Felix da Costa (Brasil, 1977)


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The heart of I Am Mandala is the reconstruction of time in old age and the recuperation of the feminine through dance. Cadu and eleven elderly women who attended a ballroom dance class in Santa María la Ribera collaborated for more than two years. During this process, they generated the idea of creating a large-scale crocheted mandala that would become unwound while dancing a danzón. The design and chromatic combinations were agreed upon between the artist and the group, taking the women’s most important life experiences as references. For the artist, the mandala represents the fragmented report of the life of each of the women. A statement that positions the time they set aside for dance as a fundamental life dynamic that has given them autonomy and reframed their femininity away from established roles of grandmother, mother, and wife.

The act of dancing-unravelling became a ritual loaded with strong emotions. A performative moment in which the women staged the conclusion of an ever-closing life cycle, a quiet and contemplative goodbye. The piece consists of a video record of the dance and the unraveling of the mandala itself, together with a single replica of the mandala, which functions as a vestige of the absence, of what will, within a short time, no longer be.

—Violeta Celis

Curators: Osvaldo Sánchez and Violeta Celis
Final Project: Video installation/Length 8' 2''

CADU, I Am Mandala, inSite/Casa Gallina (process).