Raised in a nature reserve in the Tropical Andes, David Anaya Maya grew up surrounded by exuberant ecosystems, diverse forms of life and different cultural landscapes. David’s first art pieces in their teens are bent-wire drawings of animals, plants and flowers from their grandmother’s garden. Early exposure to poetry, music, painting and architecture came from the artists in their family who lived across the garden, in the land cultivated and envisioned by the family matriarch. Since his graduation as ‘Maestro’ from Los Andes University in Bogota in 2004, David has worked with an extensive range of materials, mediums and concepts, exploring seminal interconnections between peoples, bodies, identities, species and ecosystems. David has won international fellowships and residencies from The Banff Center in Canada, The Drawing Center in New York, and the New York Foundation for the Arts. They’ve been living between New York and Bogotá since 2014.
About this collection of work:
Each of these paper cut drawings are directly related to the paintings included in my last solo show in New York, In the Beginning. With these pieces I try to reconcile fragments of the world we live in —that otherwise would be disperse and disconnected, and serve like vestiges of the many other ways in which our own culture could recall its provenance, its own traits, and its own idealisms. Looking for a side-eye glance of mythological narratives, what I seek with them is to activate a dialogue between conscious, unconscious, and even obscure beliefs, as I am trying to test its material feasibility. On that note, the exuberant historicity brought to us by each type of existing paper —that in many cases is intertwined with all sorts of sacred texts, also finds its place in these drawings. Perhaps one of the best known reference to this connection between technique and spirituality comes to us from the papyrus of Ancient Egypt, but this is rather singular than unique. The ritualistic creation of Amate paper in pre Hispanic Mexico is a good example of the many other societies that understood the materiality of paper as a sacred component, even before having a single word on it. Likewise, the extensive technical experimentation led by papermakers from different traditions facilitates the journey of our technical imagination: mulberry, cotton, bamboo, are among the fibers that supports these drawings. Not far behind are the possibilities presented by the kind of papers that we can find in stationary stores, displaying extravagant colors, ideal for other type of rituals —perhaps more contemporary but no less mythological, such as shiny metal papers or iridescent colors perfect to light up birthday celebrations. These drawings were part of the 208 drawings included in En el Principio, my last show in Bogotá hosted by the 3rd Module Gallery.