About the Exhibition
“When I was young and surrounded by family, our favorite ritual was storytelling. We gathered around a fire, or sometimes just sat outside in the dark, and took turns telling local lore, myths, and legends.” – Angelica Raquel
Born and raised in the border city of Laredo, TX, Angelica Raquel uses narratives rooted in folklore, familial storytelling, and her personal experiences to shape a new body of work for her exhibition Spirit Epoch. This exhibition centers the artist’s rediscovery and exploration of the familial folklore of her childhood through an immersive installation of needle felt sculptures, textiles, and watercolors. In Raquel’s storytelling, she and her loved ones become characters in animal form. She describes how the work is “a conduit to investigate tales of morality and the soul. Each story navigates its own path to realizing the importance of relationships and their continued hold, even after death.” Raquel’s introduction to storytelling came from her late grandfather who she shares is “a man utterly connected to earth, nature, and Spirit.” His stories would hold Raquel in suspense as a child and, since his passing, she has taken up the mantle of a storyteller, allowing herself to relive these magical memories through her artwork. Raquel explains, “Using these very special moments in my life, my own epochs, I’m reinterpreting my experiences to reflect on my own thoughts about the clashing of culture, society, and the relationship between humans and animals.”
This exhibition will feature spoken poetry by Jacinto Jesús Cardona to honor the oral traditions of storytelling that shaped Angelica’s upbringing along the Mexico-United States border. These recordings will be available online and via QR codes in the gallery, complementing the visitor’s experience of Spirit Epoch.
Featured image: Angelica Raquel, Los Tesoros De Mi Abuelito (2020). Needle felted wool, glass, sculpey clay, metal, rug hooked patches, and textiles. 7 x 4 x 3’.
About the Artist
Born and raised in the border city of Laredo, TX, Angelica Raquel draws much of her inspiration from her upbringing and the culture she grew up in. Using narratives rooted in folklore, familial storytelling, and her personal experiences, Angelica investigates ideas of morality and the soul. Her use of animal imagery has a dual purpose of representing a personal loved one, herself, and the animal.
Based in San Antonio TX, Angelica works as an Educator and Artist. Her love of nature and animals constantly influences her multidisciplinary studio practice, which consists of fibers, sculpture, painting, and drawing. She earned a Masters in Fine Arts from The University of Texas at San Antonio in 2020 and a Bachelors in Fine Arts from Texas State University in 2016.
About the Writer
Jacinto Jesús Cardona is a San Antonio, TX, poet who grew up in Alice, TX, the Hub of South Texas. He is the author of Pan Dulce, a poetry book that celebrates his Tex-Mex experience. His poem “Bato Con Khakis” was selected for performance at the New York City Symphony Space. He is a Voz de San Antonio Poetry Champion, and his poetry is documented in Voices From Texas by San Antonio filmmaker Ray Santiesteban. Cardona teaches English at Incarnate Word High School.