Dee Marcellus Cole

Burden of Celebration   Mixed Media, 49x19x13



In 1998 I traveled to Bolivia with the University Research Expedition Team to document Carnival in Oruro, a 12,000 foot high mining town. We spent two weeks learning about this pre-lenten Carnival. Carnival was a three day event that took a year of preparation. Special shoes and costumes were made starting the week after Carnival ended. Each Group practiced their dance routine months before Carnival. They dance the entire route of three miles before their arrival at "The Church of the Virgin on the Mine Shaft" where they kneel and pray. One occurrence that I found unique was the Quechua women added another full slip under their skirt each time they went to Carnival.

For "Carnival Dancers Times Two," my preparation begins with the images drawn on heavy poster board. To this, a second board is taped with crumpled paper placed between the two poster boards. Many layers of craft paper are glued to the surface. When dried, the piece is sanded, gessoed and then painted.

Color and texture designs are inspired from my collection of textiles and pottery from my travels to Central and South America. The title, "Carnival Dancers Times Two," is my second time using Carnival as a theme. Placement of the pieces simulates dancing Carnival participants with the viewers as the spectators of a Carnival.

Now it is time to celebrate Carnival! Viva Carnival!