Dreamland Kenia Almaraz Murillo
Invitation to a Mystical Dreamland by Kenia Almaraz Murillo
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Custot Gallery Dubai is hosting Invitation to a Mystical Dreamland, a solo show by Bolivian artist Kenia Almaraz Murillo. It allows viewers to catch a glimpse of the world of her dreams. Featuring 11 art pieces, which include new ones, the exhibition is divided into six chapters, each presenting six different visions. You will be able to admire Murillo’s distinctive works until the 6th of April, 2024.

Drawing inspiration from the dream realm, where memories merge with a symbolic language, Murillo thoroughly documents her most striking dreams in dream journals. Every vision is a tapestry of experiences which weave together fragments of the artist’s subconscious with symbols resonating deeply within her psyche. The characters she encounters and the fantastic landscapes she travels through guide her journey of self-discovery. So when Murillo looks through the pages of her dream journals, she revisits her otherworldly adventures and seeks insight and understanding.

Kenia Almaraz Murillo, La Queue de l’éscorpion, 2024. Weaving in alpaca, wool, cotton, nylon (sourced locally from Bolivia and France),
gold threads (the 1920s-40s, France), embroideries from the traditional Bolivian costumes of Caporales San Simon Cochabamba (edition 2013),
gemstones, LED neon, plexiglass, and a stainless steel structure. 165 × 150 × 10 cm

About the artist

Kenia Almaraz Murillo (b. 1994, Santa Cruz de la Sierra, Bolivia), who has lived in Paris (France) since she was 11 years old, employs weaving, painting, and fresco in her art practice. From 2015 to 2020, she was an apprentice at French textile artist Simone Prouvé’s workshop. In 2020, Murillo received a National Superior Diploma of Plastic Arts (DNSAP) with the jury’s distinction from the Beaux-Arts de Paris.

The artist’s childhood spent in Bolivia serves as an endless source of inspiration for her. Her textile artworks are deeply inspired by traditional Bolivian weaving, featuring the geometric forms and symbols of the Andean textile, and pay tribute to the vibrant colours she observes in nature. In her art, Murillo examines new visual elements while celebrating and modernising her cultural heritage at the same time. For example, she incorporates coloured neon lights into her art pieces, thus giving a symbolic and innovative dimension to traditional weaving.

Kenia Almaraz Murillo, Oryx, 2023. Weaving in alpaca, wool, cotton, acrylic (local Bolivia & France),
gold threads (the 1930s-40s, France), LED neon, and a stainless steel structure. 96 × 140 × 7 cm

Murillo has taken part in numerous solo and group exhibitions which include Sur le fil: de Dakar à Paris (Galerie du 19M, Paris, 2023); ARCO Madrid (Galerie Anne Sarah Benichou, IFEMA, Madrid, Spain, 2023); Les MetamorFoses (Musée des Arts et Métiers, Paris, 2022); The time of the eclipse (Boulakia Gallery, London, UK, 2022); Material Journey (Custot Gallery, Dubai, 2022); Volta Art Fair (Galerie Sobering, Basel, Switzerland, 2021); Hémisphère (Poush Manifesto, Clichy, France, 2021); Momentum (Galerie Épisodique, Paris, 2020); and others. In 2023, the artist became a recipient of the Emerige-CPGA Award at ARCO Madrid.

Kenia Almaraz Murillo, La Ciudad de Oro, 2024. Weaving in wool, alpaca, linen, bamboo, cotton, acrylic (local Bolivia and France),
gold threads (the 1920s-40s, France), embroideries from traditional Bolivian Caporales San Simon Cochabamba costumes (edition 2017),
gem, LED neon, plexiglass, and stainless steel structure. 130 × 119 × 10 cm

Since 2016, Murillo has been working with visual artist Elliott Causse and has created a series of frescoes between Paris and Santa Cruz in collaboration with him. These include Plan 3000 (La Rotonda, Santa Cruz de la Sierra, Bolivia, 2019) and Géométrie en mouvement (Lehalle Gallery, Paris, 2018), among others. One of the most notable works is Fluctuations (2018), a 123m fresco in the UGC Cine Cite Les Halles (Paris).

To learn more about Invitation to a Mystical Dreamland, please visit the official website of Custot Gallery.

You might also be interested in visiting Material Power: Palestinian Embroidery at Tabari Artspace.