Cecilia Vicuña: Seehearing the Enlightened Failure is published in conjunction to the artist’s comprehensive exhibition retrospective curated by Miguel A. López, and held at Witte de With from May to November 2019.
Overlapping autobiography with sharp political reflections, Vicuña weaves visceral entanglements between word and seed, sound and thread, quipu and blood, body and dust, or rubbish and cosmos. This exhibition and accompanying publication is the most comprehensive survey today of a groundbreaking work that has been deeply influential among her peers and for later generations.
As the exhibition, this publication gives an overview of Vicuña’s artistic practice as a poet, visual artist, and activist from the 1960s to the present day. It is edited by López, designed by Studio Manuel Raeder in Berlin, and includes a forward by Sofía Hernández Chong Cuy, new essays by Miguel A. López, Julia Bryan-Wilson and Carla María Macchiavello, existing essays by Lucy Lippard and Dawn Adès, an anthology of texts authored by Cecilia Vicuña, and a number of previously unpublished visual documentation that expands our understanding of her work.
The book is fully illustrated. It includes color and black and white photography of more than 120 artworks by Vicuña, encompassing the full range of Vicuña’s body of work: textiles, poetry, performances, film, collages, drawings, paintings, precarious objects, and activism. A chapter in the book is especially devoted to these images, which are organized in four thematic sections.