Manos en busqueda de un idioma / Hands in search of a language, 2011, Screenprinted artist book, 15.25" x 5" x 14," Property of the artist.
"Manos en busqueda de un idioma / Hands in search of a language" explores hands and a house's structure as metaphors for values that define a culture. The piece examines the reliance between these two items ("hands" and "homes") and their affect upon each other -- the faith, love, emotional, physical and religious support that keep them centered and together.
Thus, in this image, the human family is represented by the many hands of different ages surrounding the house shape, signifying a dream home wherein many hands want to live and share their lives. The structure is a metaphor connoting multiple meanings because hands and a home accordingly give shelter and provide a place of nurture, growth and protection.
Not instantly revealed in the work is the particular cultural identity of individuals; but instead identity is obliquely hinted at by the letters used on the back, i.e., the "ch" and the "ñ," which are letters in the Spanish alphabet. These symbols remind us that there are more similarities than differences, which define a family, especially in the way its members function and relate to each other. Everyone in a family is important to the structure and has a purpose. As we go deeper into family structures, we can see differences in ages, gender and how they relate to each other.
Dávila's artist-book does not center on one type of family or culture but instead stresses the larger unit -- the human family -- in which every individual brings something, and this diversity makes society richer. The images, by focusing on verbal and visual language, reveal truths about who we are as a culture.
Dávila has a long interdisciplinary history centered in print techniques. Here, she has used screenprinting combined with the book format to create a narrative that is displayable in three-dimensional form, yet intimate enough to be hand-held. Dávila has been influenced by postmodern discussions on how interpretation comes from our personal realities. For more information on this artist please