Book by Delmari Keith Romero presented

Book by Delmari Keith Romero presented
Book by Delmari Keith Romero presented

Within the framework of Mexico-Brazil Dual Year 2024the writer Delmari Keith Romero presented her book Helio Oiticica: Parangolé, accompanied by art experts such as Rita Eder, Santiago Espinosa de los Montero and Héctor Tajonar, who highlighted the contributions of the Brazilian artist Helio Oiticica (1937-1980) and the artistic expression known as parangolé that originated in the mid-60s.

During the presentation, held on Thursday night at the Industrial Club of Mexico City, the author explained that this book, published by Mousse Publishing, took her four years of research and that it can be defined as a “critical study about a moment of the artistic production of Oiticicawhich is the parangolé, which covers from 1964 to 1979″.

Parangolé, he commented during the presentation, “is a Portuguese slang term that means animated situation, confusion and agitation between people”, it is a collective, multisensory and multidisciplinary expression where it is possible to bring together dance, poetry, theater and contortion, which mixes layers , flags, jute and colorful fabrics and includes poetic and political texts of denunciation.

“These are inhabited paintings and garments designed to make covers, while the samba is collectively danced; in an appropriation of the favela and the carnival, an experience of collective ecstasy,” she explained.

Oiticica radically changed the way of making and understanding art not only because through his manifestations he brought together all contemporary trends in a conceptual and performative discourse, but also because, in addition, parangolé is a work that was inserted in the historical moment in which denounced the military coup by General Castelo Brancoin 1964, dancing samba and wearing colorful capes and jute fabrics with inscriptions of denunciation.

“Because parangolé is a poetic, political and visionary proposal, it is a manifestation of canons other than the Eurocentric ones. There we find this intersection of views between the hidden and the vernacular, it is a strategy of artistic renewal articulated to a project of great innovation and aesthetic vitality,” he highlighted.

Finally, he assured that “the parangolé is a conceptual act that took place in a liminal time, under the argument of the anthropologist Víctor Turner, which questions the established order of society in a liminal time, that is, in a break in time that, during certain initiation rites or public festivals, where marginal members of society adopt a threatening appearance to question the established social order.”

At the time, art critic Rita Eder recalled that the Brazilian artist Helio Oiticica drew on a tradition called concretism, which means that he studied how to work space and (artistic) form within geometric shapes.

“He was a neoconcrete artist, then an artist of objects, shapes and sculptures, but he gradually left all that and transferred his energy to getting out of this, because after the Second World War there was a movement that, in Latin America, had other characteristics and that caused discontent with what art can achieve since it has to be a museum object, an object only for collection, why can’t it be in life and why can’t it change life?

Subsequently, the curator and art critic Santiago Espinosa de los Montero highlighted that Delmari Keith Romero’s book includes new visions and different approaches that other authors had not done to the artistic expression known as parangolé.

He highlighted that when looking back at Oiticica’s work, it has not aged badly. “And not only has it not aged badly, but many contemporary visual creators have followed its line and its trajectory at some point in their contemporary works.”

However, the interesting thing about this is that it becomes a starting point for a new kind of performance, he said, where an artistic action cannot be seized, stolen or bought, that is, “it is not a collectible piece, but that it only exists while it lasts, while we are watching it develop at that moment.”


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