Etymologically, Kama Sutra emerges from the Sanskrit words for love and ritual or the more literal thread. The idea serves as inspiration for the Cuban artist Erik Ravelo, a resident at Fabrica, the artists’ grant institution associated with United Colors of Benneton. In his series, Lana Sutra, meaning both wool ritual or wool thread, Ravelo constructs erotic threaded sculptures made from plaster casts and yarn.
The works are simultaneously tangible and ethereal, for although the artist’s hand reveals crude fibers, the figures dangle impossibly as if in midair, their brightly colored fabric intermingling. Each piece captures the beauty of human sexuality is arrestingly simple ways; the weight of each individual body balances on its partner as the artist’s expert use of form, shape, and color entice the eye to merge the two as one.
Not only is the series a moving representation of personal relationships and love making, but it also speaks to broader global concerns. Ravelo explains, “No man is an island. Yes, I was born on Cuba but, above all, I was born on Planet Earth. I like to think that Lana Sutra talks about universal love[.]” Indeed, the figures’ genders, races, religions, and origins remain ambiguous, allowing them to powerfully emerge as a soulful and unique representation of the everyman and woman.
Thanks to Beautiful/Decay
Images via Beautiful/Decay
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