PERFORMANCE BY ANITA EKMAN TOCA DO INFERNO. PARQUE NACIONAL SERRA DA CAPIVARA. Piauí, Brasil. August 2017 and March 2018 Pictures by Ana Mesquita.
The Toca do Inferno (the ‘Cave of Hell’ - in Serra da Capivara National Park, Piauí, Brazil) was the venue chosen by the artist Anita Ekman for her performance. The cave contains deposits of red ochre (iron oxide) pigment used in cave paintings. Serra da Capivara is the site with the highest concentration of rock art in the world, and as such is of global significance, serving the rock artists over the past thirteen thousand years who painted shelters in this region. For Ekman, the entrance to this cave resembles a vagina and its interior evokes a blood-lined uterus. In her performance, Ekman remakes the female gestures present in the rock art of the Capivara, envisaging the presence of women in the art of the American continent since its origins. Through her performance she uncovers other possible interpretations of rock art images, such as the potential representation of shadows.