Warping the word and weaving the visual : textile aesthetics in the poetry and the artwork of Jorge Eduardo Eielson and Cecilia Vicuña

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Clark, Meredith Gardner

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The present work explores the presence of Andean textile imagery in the poetry and the visual art of Jorge Eduardo Eielson and Cecilia Vicuña with the goal of illustrating how these woven aesthetics enrich the content of the written word and other artistic media by supplementing them with non-verbal, visual and tactile planes of meaning. Through the discourse of the thread, Eielson and Vicuña generate an alternative means of expression that dialogues with the conventionality of human language, the creation of cultural memory and the connection between intercultural groups. To prove this thesis, I approach the authors’ poetry and visual art based on theoretical and cultural studies regarding the materiality and the visuality of the text and other media in combination with a comparative analysis of the structural and the design properties of Andean and indigenous cloth products, namely the tejido and the khipu. In addition to close readings of poems that illustrate how the presence of the textile augments the meaning of the written text, I also illustrate how Andean weaving aesthetics provide the metaphorical springboard of comparison upon which a critical analysis of their visual art is based.



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