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In depth articles and films that delve into social topics by amplifying independent new voices

STORIES
Reality as a form of expression
Beneath the surfaces of paintings
180, the wrong tv
Recording music outside the studio
How to tell stories?
A journey through the decade
Reality as a form of expression

A series on artists who use manual and traditional methods to create and express themselves

Background

We live in a period where everything seems to happen in the digital world. Creating and showcasing work online, especially on social media, became more and more common leading us into an absence of touching and presence. This new reality privileges the fast and spontaneous content, prioritising quantity over quality.

For this series, we invite artists who use manual and traditional methods to create and express themselves. Through a long and deep conversation, we tried to understand the connection that each one has with their work and why they chose to “fly off the digital”. During our dialogue, we also discussed some projects that the artists have developed giving us some internal insight on what was the creative and showcase process.

ROMINA CHULS

Romina Schulz or Romina Chuls (as she presents herself) is a Peruvian artist who combines textiles, ceramics, drawings and paintings as a way to express herself. She studied Fine Arts with a major in painting in the Pontificia Universidad Católica del Perú where, in the last years of her studies and, influenced by her grandmother’s, she started to use textile as a format to explore the women’s history in her family. Currently, Romina is studying a master's program in Arts Politics at NYU Tisch School of the Arts. 

I try to be a stranger to it (digital).  Is not that I naturally feel like a stranger. I do try to be as a foreigner as I can with the digital world.

— Romina Chuls

Her works focus on problems faced by Peruvian and Latin American women in their daily lives. Problems related to androcentric memory, territorial demarcation, nationalism and Western human rights.

“The detonator for my projects is always autobiographical, always political. Everything comes from an itchy discomfort, from the beauty of externalizing my pain as part of my spiritual practice, from the reappropriation of my flesh.”, says Romina Chuls.

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Sobre cuerpas fronterizas by Romina Chuls

Embriones Huacos

Embriones Huacos is a project that explores a fictional history about the interruption of pregnancy that pre-Hispanic communities from the coast of Peru practiced. This project originated as an archeological practice of imagination where these pieces envision a community defined by rites of abortion. It also confronts the resulting omissions from which colonialism and patriarchy have constructed Peruvian history. At the same time, this questions what was “allowed” to be represented by pre-Hispanic cultures on the coast of Peru.

This project combines graphite sketches of the shapes of Nasca and Mochica huacos with ceramic embryos carved by Romina, and to create a connection between those elements, Chuls added a cross-knit loop made by a Nasca mantle, a textile that houses symbols of fertility.

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Embriones Huacos by Romina Chuls 

Clandestinas

Clandestinas portrays the emotional stage of being pregnant with an unwanted being in an environment like Lima, Peru, where abortion is illegal. This project started as a healing process after Romina’s abortion four years ago. The fear and lack of protection resulted in an emotional burden that Chuls was looking to abort, completing the physical procedure.

Most of the time, the discussion about abortion’s rights in countries where it is illegal is focused on when life starts. Romina changed that approach to the women’s emotional and physical situation, a focus that has been missing from all the debates.

“It is time to direct the discussion to pregnant bodies.”, says Romina. In a context where pregnancy’s interruption is illegal, where you do not own your body, surviving abortion becomes a privilege. This project invites the viewers to submerge themselves in the feeling of carrying an alien embryo while their body keeps changing.

The two materials used in this project confront each other in a moment of tension and overwhelming weight. The knittings, the works in fiber, simulate bodies reappropriating their uterus. The ceramic pieces present themselves as embryos that become stone, aliens to the knittings.

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Clandestinas by Romina Chuls

NEW EPISODES EVERY MONTH UNTIL DECEMBER

This article was written by João Martins,

featuring the first episode of

Disconnection also directed by João Martins.

Proofreading and translation of the video

and this article by Eva Magro.

First published on October 13th.

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