Sueño en Tela
An exhibition by Chris Marin
“I had a friend who was talking about the importance of fantasy in terms of liberation. You have to think outside of the box, because your thinking has literally been put in a box, on purpose. You have to be fantastic; you have to see something that might not be there.”
Thebe Kgositsile professionally known as Earl Sweatshirt
The title shifted from Dreaming in Fabric to Sueño en Tela because this art showcases an exaggeration of fabric being the physical address, which is the body. Dreaming proves to an escape from the immediate and a portal to an exaggerated reality. You should dream in your own terms, and the native tongue indicated dreaming in Spanish.
In America we are raised with linguistic privilege, however, these artist use language as an access point for the audience. Politically aware, the artwork meets people where they are, so the audience is met with floating notes written in English and Spanish. This is tangibly fighting linguistic hegemony. This intersectionality is important to both validate and put a spotlight on most often a class struggle (the global north versus the global south). Each artist is of Latin American decent.
Before recalling the need for fantasy, Earl was both complementing the resourcefulness of and critiquing the need for college. Earl is referring to the constant need to explain oneself in academia, only to look up and realize your explaining an already developed culture to “all white people... on some American thinking.” Owning their native tongues for the title of the show, and titles of the artworks, the vernacular of the artists are not good or bad, only natural. This idea is not socially aware or radical, just a distinction.
Clothes has the potential to be skin through contagion and the idea goes beyond identity. Fabric is an extension of the self: functionally and visually. The bodies of work are now considered more than just art. Everyone cares about fashion. There are different types of cool and in this privileged life we can express that cool with cultural of textures, dyed fabrics, screen prints, brands and so on.
Occupying the space of installation, adds to this innate taste in Art that is not singularly defined. If you are to put the work into a box, then put it in as many boxes as possible. The in between space captivates me be it in between: Chicano, Mexican, and Colombian cultures, 2D and 3D works, resurgence of craft and traditional forms of art, comedy and serious tones, and private and public spheres.
We judge a person based off a glimpse: shiny and flashy, worn and beaten down from the farms of Colombia, prepubescent colors to disregarded scraps. Although some choices of identity are dangerous and more than saturated (how we dress and its perception), the fabric is another way of keeping you informed. The utility of fabric into contemporary art gives a built-in history into the artwork and techniques used, something beyond what is traditionally thought of as an artist’s mediums. Clothing reflects the wearer, attaching ideas to images; it reflects all our biases. It has not only the capacity for great interconnection with other people, but the judgement of another person’s belongings (clothing) will fall short. Here in the dreamscape of Sueño en Tela, the clothing fantasizes, too.