Maddu Huacuja - Open the Way
October 10, 2019 – February 21, 2020
“Open the way” is Maddu Huacuja’s meditation on movement, life, migration and the journey of life to death, expressed in the paintings and drawings featured in this exhibition. Four paintings, three drawings, and three oil pastels comprise the presented trajectory of Huacuja’s engagement with the present and the transcendent and with the material and evanescent aspects of history and existence.
Huacuja’s path to this exhibition began with her lifelong exploration of her identity, as a Mexican-American, and her existence as a global citizen. As her life has unfolded, Huacuja has explored her mixed selves combined with her interest in diverse environments and in the animals and peoples who share our living space. One of her early interests was the Amazon jungle, with its rich and diverse life and its peoples, myths and iconic animal life. From her regard and research, she began, in the past ten years, to create a series of drawings and paintings within which she explores subjects and themes focused on her desire to capture that which is fleeting and vanishing in the Amazon. Yet, even as the jungle diminishes, its continuing life still retains its continuity and connections with Nature.
Within the world Huacuja has created, she follows a train of thought that links animals and people, who merge into one another in a continuing cycle of shared existence. Migration and movement have been a part of human existence since the first homo sapiens walked out of our ancestral home in Africa and began to wander and populate the world. Migrations caused by natural disasters, such as fire, flood, drought and the failure of land to produce abundant food define Latin America’s history in significant ways. From the abandoned cities of the Maya, the Aztec and the Moche, which became lost in time, when they could no longer sustain their peoples, to the more recent waves of migrants coming north to seek new places to live, the movement of people and animals in search of a sustainable life is part of Latin American identity.
This exhibition is an opportunity for spectators to stop and consider the subjects and themes she presents to the spectator in the works that spring from her desire to enable others to understand why what is happening to the helpless and unfortunate matters. Through the artist’s representation of the environments, animal species and humans being impacted by the forces that destroy their homes and lives, she enables her audience to commune with their plight and with her emotional response to their reality. In so doing, Huacuja leads her audience to its reception of her message, one which delineates this crucial moment in human history in which we currently find ourselves.
Open the Way
An exhibition of works that celebrate dignity and cultural wealth by dispelling the myths and misperceptions about migrants.