An Exhibition of 50 Piñatas Explores the Cultural Significance of the Festive Object


OCTOBER 14, 2021. GRACE EBERT
Installation view of Roberto Benavidez’s sculptures (front) and Isaias Rodriguez, “resilience” (2021) (back). Photo by Madison Metro, Craft in America. All images courtesy of Craft in America

 

A ubiquitous decoration at birthdays and family celebrations, piñatas are conventionally associated with fun, festivity, and of course, their potential to split open and release candy and other treats. Now on view at Craft in America, a group exhibition re-envisions the party staple by connecting it with contemporary practices that extend the playful artform’s capacity for social and political commentary.

Roberto Benavidez, “Illuminated Hybrid No. 5” (2018). Photo by Madison Metro, Craft in America

Piñatas: The High Art of Celebration features approximately 50 works from Mexico- and U.S.-based artists and collectives, who explore the evolution of traditional construction techniques and the object’s broad cultural significance that reaches beyond its Mexican heritage. The fantastical creatures of Roberto Benavidez’s illuminated manuscript series, for example, encapsulate questions about race and sin, while Justin Favela (previously) translates the confrontation between American pop culture and Latinx experiences into fringed, abstract landscapes. […]

Detail of Isaias Rodriguez, “resilience” (2021). Photo by Matthew Hermosillo

 

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About agogo22

Director of Manchester School of Samba at http://www.sambaman.org.uk
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