I am happy to share with you a recent Twitter thread on my visit to the National Art Gallery of Canada for their Contemporary Indigenous Art Exhibit, Ábadakone (Continous Fire/Feu Continuel).
If you’re on Twitter, don’t bother with this post, you already know what to do!
In this thread, I focus on the three Maya artists from Iximulew (Guatemala) who were part of the exhibit, Fernando Poyón (Kaqchikel), Edgar Calel (Kaqchikel), and Manuel Chavajay (Tz’utujil). The exhibit was fabulous and I do hope many people go see it. I’m excited to think through some things, to write about others, and who knows, maybe even pay a second visit to the Gallery! I do need a copy of the catalogue (it was not yet out), so a second trip may be in order.
Nota en español.
Es un placer compartirles esta mini-reseña estilo Twitter de la exhibición de artistas indígenas contemporáneos Ábadakone (lengua Algonquin que significa Fuego continuo) de la Galería Nacional de Canadá (8 de noviembre al 5 de abril de 2020). Aquí me enfoco en los 3 artistas mayas de Iximulew (Guatemala) cuya obra es parte de la exhibición, Fernando Poyón, Edgar Calel y Manuel Chavajay. Los curadores realizaron una gran labor y vale la pena ver el resultado: más de 70 artistas de todas partes del mundo quienes representan a más de 40 naciones y grupos indígenas de más de 16 países. En estos momentos me encuentro reflexionando, pensando en qué escribir y quizás hasta considerando otra visita–aún no han impreso el catálogo, así que quizás sea necesario ir por uno en cuanto salga. El hilo está en inglés, pero sospecho que si lo abren en Twitter hay opción de traducción.
After much experimentation (and a huge realization: the ad blocker on my browser was preventing me from seeing embedded tweets properly), I finally figured out how to embed an entire thread in my blog. This particular thread took some preparation because I wanted to make sure I talked about Ángelica and her work the best way I could. This is the first time her work is featured and it’s a very big honour for me. I trust you will find her work as beautiful and compelling as I do.
Quick note: @Tsikbalichmaya is Paul M. Worley’s Twitter handle, in case you’re wondering.
Last week, Ángel Poyón asked me to translate a brief description of a recent piece, Kaxlanwäy (2019), for a social media post he was working on. I did just that, and since I enjoyed it so much, I asked him for permission and then put it up in a tweet. And since that was so much fun, I decided to do it again, this time featuring the work of Marilyn Boror Bor, a Kaqchikel artist working in Guatemala City. And so here we are, I’m now writing fun threads about contemporary Maya art.
This latest thread was a bit more extensive since I thought about it as a thread and I asked Marilyn to send me photos. She sent me a bunch and I managed to include quite a few. Check it out:
To learn more about Marilyn’s work, head over to the Twitter.* And yes, I’ll try to do a bunch more of these threads since the work that Maya artists are putting out is pretty sharp and deserves our attention. That, and in case you haven’t heard, some amazing contemporary Maya art will be making its way to the National Art Gallery of Canada this November, for the second Contemporary International Indigenous Art exhibition, Àbadakone | Continuous Fire | Feu continuel, which will feature more than 70 artists from all over the globe.
*I’m being facetious. Kind of. I’m fairly new at the Twitter.
Next month, Paul (my co-author) and I will be travelling to Guatemala to present Unwriting at FILGUA (Feria Internacional del Libro en Guatemala), drop off a copy at the Biblioteca Nacional, participate in the III Conferencia Internacional sobre Literatura Centroamericana Contemporánea, and host a discussion on contemporary Maya literature with Rosa Chávez, Manuel Tzoc Bucup, and Luz Lepe Lira at the Guatemala Scholars Network annual conference. As you can imagine, we’re beyond excited to share our work, make connections, and start new projects. I actually swore I would not undertake anything new for a while but that lasted about a week. So, instead, I solemnly swear to be kind to myself and to really limit the work I do outside of my own research (and only after my work-work). In case you’re interested, below I’ve listed some of the things we’ll be doing in Guatemala. I’ll add to it as dates are confirmed but you can also follow me (@ProfRPalacios) and/or Paul (@Tsikbalichmaya) on Twitter to see what we’re up to.
Our Conference Circuit
“Nuevos acercamientos y perspectivas en torno al estudio de las literaturas indígenas contemporáneas.” New Approaches and Perspectives in the Study of Indigenous Literatures Guatemala Scholars Network Conference, Antigua, Guatemala. July 11-13.
Presentation of Unwriting Maya Literature: Ts’íib as Recorded Knowledge. Commentary by Irma Otzoy and Manuel Tzoc Bucup. FILGUA, Guatemala. July 15.
“La escritura pensada de otra manera: Ts’íib y el reto a la palabra escrita.” Writing Another Way: Ts’íib and a Challenge to the Written Word. III Conferencia Internacional sobre Literatura Centroamericana Contemporánea: Literaturas Indígenas y Afrodescendientes. FILGUA, Guatemala, July 16-19.