Peninsulares. Territories of Wool

Covilhã and Cáceres

Peninsulares project has the main objective of promoting contemporary textile art, both Portuguese and Spanish. The promoters are the cultural organisations Ideias Emergentes/Bienal Contextile on the Portuguese side and Indigo Proyectos and various regional and state associations on the Spanish side.

The project is based on the idea of linking Spain and Portugal, two territories in which the textile sector was and is extremely important not only in economic terms but also in social, cultural, heritage and artistic terms.

Thus it is urgent to think about new forms of cooperation between (textile) territories that allow the (de)construction of classical borders and find new flows of relationship, knowledge and exchange from the various proposals offered by contemporary textile art, thus valorising the universality of the phenomenon of the emergence of textile art, a new medium of artistic expression in full harmony with the new paradigms of contemporary art.

Territories of Wool

Tapestries woven with wool and used as external symbols of wealth and power have always been considered the artistic textiles per excellence in Europe. But a textile, any textile – in this case, wool – presents an extraordinary wealth of readings and underlying contexts, not only about the origin and history of the raw material but also about its transformation, its use and its aesthetic and even moral codes, how and who produced it, under what conditions, to whom it belonged… The textile – wool – is thus assumed as a container of collective and personal memories and as the creative tool to explore the themes that concern today’s society: the relationship with the territory and nature, sustainability, the role of men, women and even child labour in the textile industry…

The Spanish and Portuguese territories on both sides of “raia” share centuries of commercial, cultural and personal exchanges around wool. An example of this is the Wool-Translana Route, which begins at the Malpartida washhouse in Cáceres – now the Vostell Museum – and ends at the Real Fábrica Veiga – Wool Museum and other factories in Covilhã.

This exhibition with wool as a reference and referent, brings together works by six Portuguese artists and six Spanish artists, at two different times, in Covilhã, Portugal and Cáceres, Spain, in addition to four artistic residencies (two in Covilhã and two in Cáceres).

Artists in exhibition: Alexandre Camarao, Altina Mar, Ana Rita Albuquerque, Celia Eslava, Irene Infantes, Leonor Serrano Rivas, Luisa Donaire, Soledad Santisteban, Susana Arce, Susana Cereja, Tiago Pereira, Vanessa Barragão

Artistic residencies: Ana Musma, Patrícia Oliveira (Covilhã); Asunción Molinos, Patrícia Geraldes (Cáceres)

Co-founded by DGArtes / Ministério da Cultura

Institutional Support: Municipality of Covilhã / City of Design

Project Partners: Museu de Lanifícios – UBI, Diputación de Cáceres

Support and partnership: Embaixada de Espanha em Portugal, Asociación Ras de Terra, Asociación Laneras, IES Sierra de Santa Bárbara de Plasencia, Museo Vostell-Malpartida, Junta de Extremadura, New Hand Lab / Associação Cultural, Burel Factory, A Transformadora