Phyton-Morphe by Josefina Guilisasti at PATRICIA READY gallery

‘Phyton-Morphe’ is a collective exhibition that can be seen at Patricia Ready Gallery in Chile. It is coordinated by the gallery’s represented artist Josefina Guilisasti in collaboration with artist Paula Subercaseaux and distinguished local craftswomen Inés Villalobos, Ruth Méndez, and Hilda Díaz. Beyond the material result of this collaboration, Guilisasti seeks to delve into her admiration for the community-type work of the Rari (Maule Region) craftswomen and, through a dialogue established by their work, blur the line between the artistic and the artisanal side of these objects.

This exhibition serves as a tribute to five phytomorphic pieces belonging to the collection of the Chilean Museum of Pre-Columbian Art in Santiago – representations that imitate the structure of plant organisms, such as representations of PHYTON-VEGETAL, MORPHE-FORMA of votive type to offer to Nature, present in Inca culture and used to thank Mother Earth for the harvests collected.

Phyton-Morphe by Josefina Guilisasti at PATRICIA READY gallery. Photography Jorge Brantmayer

‘The vegetal of horsehair and the mineral of bronze and stoneware move towards the vegetal to become a tribute to those phytoforms that the early settlers of South America offered to the Earth.
The horsehair handicraft was born in Rari, in the Maule Region, Chile, more than 200 years ago. It is a craft of almost exclusively feminine dedication; women gather and work together, sharing their knowledge and their daily lives, and from this instance, their works emerge. The link is a constitutive part of this craft, both on a personal level and with the territory: braiding the mane has maintained the social fabric of this community, which in turn is sustained by this knowledge that defines and gives meaning to its existence.’
Isabel Margarita Bustos

Horsehair sculpture by Hilda Díaz. Photography Jorge Brantmayer

The result of this encounter is a dialogue between the materialities and techniques used, as well as the craft of each of these women. It is in this conversation, the territories, the ancestral, tradition, and contemporary art are related in an organic way through noble materials.

Paula Subercaseaux works with ceramics and porcelain as if her works were always emerging from the water like they were the result of its movement, its imprint. Her forms refer to the aquatic vegetable as well as to the cross between what seems to be a vegetable but is an animal, such as coral. The artist molds water and imitates it in its paths, which are the same that human beings have followed throughout history. She traps water in each piece as the treasure that it is and that every day is more scarce. As are the craftswomen of Rari, who are also diminishing with the disappearance of rurality as we once knew it.’ Isabel Margarita Bustos

Stoneware sculpture by Paula Subercaseaux. Photography Jorge Brantmayer

‘Artist Josefina Guillisasti works with bronze from the most golden shines to the maximum darkness of the material. This way she generates sculptures of vegetal objects that become abstracted as the black turns them into their tangible form rather than their visual representation. In her work, she immortalizes, as our ancestors did, simple seasonal lives on which, as human beings, we still depend and will continue to depend in order to survive.’ Isabel Margarita Bustos

Bronze sculpture by Josefina Guillisasti. Photography Jorge Brantmayer

This initiative is financed by the Ministry of Culture, Arts, and Heritage (Chile) through its Support Program for Collaborating Cultural Organizations.

Exhibition details | Phyton-Morphe by Josefina Guilisasti | Location: PATRICIA READY Gallery, Espoz 3125, Vitacura, Santiago, Chile | Date: 06.04.2022 – 11.05.2022

Horsehair sculpture by Ruth Méndez. Photography Jorge Brantmayer