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By Kathleen Cammarata

A codex is a handwritten manuscript, the stepping stone from the scroll to the book. Developed by Romans from wooden writing tablets, the codex gradually replaced the scroll by the sixteenth century and is considered the most important advance in the history of the book before the invention of the printing press. The term now is only used for hand written manuscripts.

Among the various paths to access knowledge, books have been for humans a key that opens a thousand doors. Through written codes, they have been instrumental in perpetuating knowledge, transforming the abstract world of thought into a particular language. Using books, pages, codes, language, and symbols in art is a visual path to illumination.

Ana Thiel and Kathleen Cammarata are presenting contemporary works of art in this genre.

Thiel states, “Just as a key opens physical locks, a book opens abstract ones, be these in the realms of science, literature, music, spirit, humanities, the range is endless. To know the appropriate code is akin to a key that makes a difference between a closed and an open door. The words or symbols can be liberated with the keys of understanding, opening worlds that are propitious for the expansion of being.” Her piece Vida is an open book reappropriated by Thiel with a glass rectangle cast inside its pages. The back cover wears gold foil symbolizing the preciousness of life. El Retorno de Don Giovanni, a repurposed album that once held vinyl records of the opera, now has a burnt rectangular space that Thiel proposes is the door to the other world, part of the theme in the opera. Thiel will also be exhibiting engravings with fumage, encaustics, and photographs that show the extraordinary in the ordinary.

Cammarata’s Codex series is fourteen monoprints, each print alluding to two pages of a book. Some of the prints have poetry, some have bits of music, and some have symbols. They are quiet pieces speaking to an old way of recording and communicating. Four long vertical mixed media pieces called Manuscripts accompany the monoprints. They, too, have collaged elements of writing. Cammarata has also painted and collaged a series of small works containing excerpts from prayer poems written by a minister named Ted Loder.

Codex opens at Esperanza Studio, Alameda 6 in Colonia San Antonio on Friday, September 8 from 3–5pm. The work will be on display until Sunday, September 17, 3–5 pm daily.}

Art Exhibition


Fri, Sep, 8, 3–5pm

Esperanza Studio

Alameda 6, Colonia San Antonio

Until Sunday Sept 17



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