Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Witchcraft and Wizardry

Brujería. That's the Mexican name for it and it was an exhibition that I went to visit last Friday.

There were gruesome pictures of devils and demons, witches and goblins, the odd mummified fairy and a fair few potions thrown in for good measure.
The confessions of witches (women undergoing torture) were an interesting read- well what I could understand at least, nothing like being dipped head first into water for days on end or being strapped to a nail studded chair to induce even the most innocent of people to confessing to whatever is thrust in front of them.

The whole exhibition was interesting, but what held most people's interest was the phallic display. Yep, a whole bunch of dildos and other sexual pleasure apparatus. The array of dildos was intriguing, mostly made of wood, some with church leaders carved on them, others bearing a striking resemblance to bike pumps or tree branches. Then there were the statues with scrotums where the chin was supposed to be and well... you can figure out the rest.

It wasn't all about sex however, there were the love potions, the potions to help heal, the potions to bring on death, lots about the relationship between nature and women. Oh, and a personal favourite- something to do with "black magic"- it was a "trap" with a lizard/gecko crawling out of it. The trap was a very hairy representation of female genitalia, displayed alongside an example of a vagina with teeth. Ok, so maybe there was a lot of sex stuff going on...

Nevertheless it was interesting and if it's ever in your area, check it out. It's an example of how the view of women has changed little over the years.

No comments: