Costa Rica: Lucía Madriz

With natural organic rice, bean and dried pea seeds – the basic ingredients of the Mesoamerican and Caribbean diet – Lucía Madriz (Costa Rica) composed a large oval shape on the floor. Dispensing with the transgenic seeds (genetically manipulated to increase their resistance and productivity) that proliferate in the fields of Latin America and the world, Madriz displays a pure and natural plantation in the form of a tapestry. The artist has outlined the shape of a haemoglobin molecule by using contrasting colours, and superimposed to that is a chlorophyll molecule, thus revealing the structural similarity of these two key elements. While the haemoglobin carries oxygen in the human body, the chlorophyll in plants absorbs the light of the sun and transforms it into energy, thus triggering photosynthesis. For Madriz, the fact that these elements share the secret of life reveals the inherent connexion between human life and nature. In the face of the ideology of consumption and the latent threat to health and the environment of manipulated food, the installation entitled Vitalis (Chloros phylon-Sanguis) exhibits the immeasurable knowledge that naturally links forms of life on the planet, through the minimum units of the species. 

Fiat Panic, 2008, Centro Cultural de España, Guatemala City, Guatemala, Installation with different types of corn and black beans, courtesy of the artist, photo by Lucía Méndez.