San José, Costa Rica, since 1956

Textile Art Event Under Way

Costa Rica this week became the host of the fourth International Biennial of Textile Art and Design, an annual event that is breaking ground this year with a series of firsts.

The biennial, held twice in the U.S. city of Miami and in Valencia, Venezuela, two years ago, this year bears the title “Man + Woman = Creation 2006” to spell out the fact that, for the first time, the event will include male participants.

According to Juan Diego Roldán, one of the event coordinators, a male-female artist couple created each of the 109 works of textile art that will be exhibited at the Costa Rican-North American Cultural Center until Oct. 11.

The exhibit includes everything from sculptures to tapestries, all using textiles as the instrument of design, said Roldán, director of the Sophia Wanamaker Gallery at the cultural center in the eastern San José neighborhood of Los Yoses.

“The biennial means a lot for Costa Rica. It brings a sampling of options we haven’t studied or gone deep into… This exhibit is to help us become people who take risks,” he said, adding that textiles form part of Costa Rican indigenous history but have never been given much importance in the mainstream.

Apart from the exhibit, the biennial, which was inaugurated Sept. 12 at the cultural center, includes textile art and design workshops run by international textile artists, a sensory class for blind artists and conferences featuring personalities of the textile world.

A trip to La PazWaterfallGardens near Poás Volcano, north of San José, was organized for today, and a textile tour of Guatemala is planned Sept. 16-19, among other activities.

Event organizers include the SpanishCulturalCenter, the CostaRican-NorthAmericanCulturalCenter and the Miamibased organization Women in Textile Art, founder of the activity.

For more info, call 207-7554.


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