Wednesday, 29 January 2020
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    'La mano que les cuidó / The hand that cared for them', by María Bonilla Armada. (Photo: Roser Corbera)
    'La mano que les cuidó / The hand that cared for them', by María Bonilla Armada. (Photo: Roser Corbera)


    Title of Textile:La Mano que les Cuidó / The Hand that Cared for Them
    Maker: María Bonilla Armada
    Country of Origin: Catalonia / Spain
    Year Produced: 2009
    Size (cm): Standard size
    Materials: Scraps of material hand sewn onto burlap
    Type of Textile: Arpillera

    María grew up during the Spanish Civil War (1936-1939), which claimed the lives of many of her family. She describes returning to her home village after the war: "We found that we had no home; we had nowhere to sleep or eat; we had absolutely nothing until we found it ourselves."

    Despite the difficulties of the Franco era, María and her husband built a home in Córdoba and raised their family. The effort and sacrifice required is reflected in her arpillera which shows her home and three children. Her own hand -- the hand that cared for them -- is dominant.

    In the economic crisis of the 1950s and 1960s, the family moved from Córdoba to Barcelona in search of a better life. Here María has remained ever since. The rural house, depicted in the arpillera, reflects a nostalgic memory of her previous home in Córdoba.

    Making arpilleras has provided María and her companions with the artistic means to recount their experiences. It has also given them the confidence to continue telling their stories.

    Owner: Fundació Ateneu Sant Roc collection
    Location: Barcelona
    Original / Replica: Original
    Photographer: Roser Corbera

    Textile exhibited at: The Human Cost of War, 8/11/2009 - 21/11/2009
    Transforming threads of resistance, 27/02/2012 - 9/03/2012
    ÜberlebensKunst - Konfliktbearbeitung durch textile Bilder, 12/07/2012 - 26/08/2012
    Stitching and Unstitching The Troubles-phase 1, 5/09/2012 - 29/09/2012

    Textile Detail Image(s)