"MITOTE"

March 2020 - MFA Fine Arts - School of Visual Arts - New York, USA

  An ancient Tolteca Shaman, who lived in the surroundings of Teotihuacan (the place where man is transformed into god), tells a story about a revelation he had one starry night. A thing so simple as a star led him to the deeper understanding that everything is made of light and that the space between the bodies of light isn’t empty but all the contrary, pure life. Human perception, then, is only light that perceives light. But individuals’ illusions and dreams create a mist or smoke, that prevents us from seeing ourselves and others clearly. If this fog weren’t present, we would be able to see ourselves in every living thing, as if these living things were reflective mirrors. We would see what we really are, pure light, pure love. 

  “Mitote” is the Tolteca term for something that prevents us from seeing what we really are.  It’s the state of illusion we are caught in, without being aware. When our mind has an abundance of mitote, it finds itself in a dream where everyone speaks at the same time, but no one understands.

 

  The installed translucent fabrics (tul and chiffon), hanging from the ceiling, embody this shamanic conception where the air becomes thick, acting as a barrier to a deeper connection with life. The theatrical dim warm light highlights each draped fabric while merging it with the environment. Viewers are intended to interact with the fabrics as if they were dancing inside a maze, the same maze they are caught in. In contrast, clay made rocks in different shapes and colors are lying on the floor. They act as totems, pure accumulated and emanated energy that trace the passing of time. They observe all living things and are witnesses of our blindsight. These long-lasting elements of the physical world also serve to ground the viewers inside the volatile installation because they are an example of contemplation and pause. 

  In “Mitote” I want to make what's standing in between us, visible. It’s an invitation to open our eyes and look through our illusions and constructions. 

Maria Sarah Del Piano 

Buenos Aires, Argentina

Visual Artist

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