Biennale d’Architecture d’Orléans, Orléans, France 2019
Cosmic Sampler is a large-dimension architectural / textile structure, developed specifically for the Orleans Architecture Biennial. The shape and design is the result of the collaboration with a a Huichol marakaame. This geometric structure creates a three-dimensional platform, which can be used for sitting or lying down. It is also a reconfigurable structure. The inspiration comes from the little samplers young girls make when they are learning to embroider.
The final design for Cosmic Sampler is made up of a collage of different pieces that according to the marakaame Alejandro López are representations of the traditional Huichol pilgrimage. This pilgrimage consists in the 400 km walk traversing 5 Mexican states that the Huichols accomplish every year. López says that the women that stay behind draw in their embroideries the “conceptual route” of this pilgrimage.
Cosmic Sampler is directly inspired by the exchange with the marakaame Alejandro López, and it represents the 5 cosmic points of the huichol worldview. The 5 places and the 5 directions; north, south, east, west, but also the center. These 5 places correspond to Hauxamanaka (Cerro Gordo, Durango), Haramaratsie (San Blas, Nayarit), Xapawiyemeta (Lago de Chapala, Jalisco), Wirikuta ( Real de Catorce, San Luis Potosí) and the spiritual center Te’akata (Sierra Huichola, Jalisco). It must be said that in the huichol worldview the north is on the right and not on the top.
Finally we would like to recall that the Huichols do not have a written language, and thus the importance of textile patterns as they area form of writing. We thought of paying homage to that idea by transforming certain patterns into binary code. A kind of bar-code where certain words will hide in plain sight.