Centurión’s textile works engaged with folk art and queer aesthetics in 1990s South America. Through embroidery and painting objects like blankets and aprons, Centurión rendered poetic readings of his youth in the tropics, his metropolis love experiences, and his spiritual reflections before his untimely death by AIDS-related illness. “Centurión’s form of activism and resistance was intimate and affective, focusing on love, spirituality, and humor — the shelter, or abrigo, that art can provide in a hostile world,” said exhibition curator Gabriel Pérez-Barreiro.
His work has been overlooked since his 1996 death, only receiving recognition in 2018, including a solo presentation at the 33rd Bienal de São Paulo: Affective Affinities. “His depictions of plants and animals constitute a garden of delights in which memory and imagination work equally to uphold his Paraguayan identity,” said Aimé Iglesias Lukin, Director and Chief Curator of Visual Arts at Americas Society.
This exhibition will be accompanied by a fully-illustrated pocket book. Thanks to support from the Institute for Studies on Latin American Art (ISLAA), Americas Society is also publishing the first comprehensive monograph on Centurión’s work, including texts by authors Bill Arning, Ticio Escobar, Jimena Ferreiro, and Francisco Lemus.
The Visual Arts Gallery at Americas Society is open Wednesday-Saturday from 12-6 pm. Follow them on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter, and keep up with Feliciano Centurión: Abrigo by using #CenturionAbrigo on social media.
Feliciano Centurión: Abrigo continues at the Americas Society (680 Park Avenue, Upper East Side, Manhattan) through May 16. The exhibition is curated by Gabriel Pérez-Barreiro.