Where I work
My studio is a small room with a window to a communal garden. Through the window, I see the top of a lush tree where many birds come to rest and look for shelter among the branches.
What inspired my work
This hand-woven tapestry pays homage to the hummingbird, a small but colourful bird associated with the legend of Quetzalcoatl, the most important God of the Aztec pantheon represented by a feathered serpent.
According to the Aztecs, Quetzalcoatl committed a mortal sin and was forced to flee his reign, full of shame. While he crossed mountains and lakes, the Aztec deity realised that the only way to liberate his physical body from shame was through burning. While his body was on fire, his heart purified and flew towards the sky, accompanied by a myriad of hummingbirds who guided him to become the morning star (Venus).
The story of Quetzalcoatl reminds us that even the smallest of birds can play a significant role in the life of the mightiest Gods.
How I made it
Instead of weaving the entire warp mounted on the loom, I created this small piece by following the shape of a bird that I designed inspired by Mexican Indigenous imagery. Technically, it was complex to weave the shape and it required me to think outside the box or the predetermined surface of the loom.
What I am working on
I am developing a series of hand-woven newspapers that will capture local and international headlines that reflect on our fractured societies and environment and questions the role of printed media in the construction or deconstruction of our social fabric.
Yunuen Pérez is a Mexican/Australian artist living on the unceded land of the Boon Wurrung and Wurundjeri people.
Educated in Mexico and Australia as a Production Designer, Yunuen began her weaving journey as a self-taught weaver in 2015, following a passion for storytelling, textiles and connection to cultural traditions and practices.