Carmelina: Figures

Carmelina: Figures

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Author: Ronaldo V. Wilson

Publisher: Wendy's Subway (2021)

Ronaldo V. Wilson’s Carmelina: Figures excavates the territory between memory, nation, and embodiment, exploring place as a discipline of the body and an extension of the hand. Through poems, photographs, drawings, records of performance, and home movies recorded in Guam, Tennessee, and the Subic Bay between 1962 and 1979, Wilson reckons with familial heritage, diaspora, and legacies of militarism.

Edition of 500

"The extraordinary Carmelina: Figures is a performance-book that possesses the reader in delicate, meditative delirium. It embodies what it speaks of, the crosscurrents of a migrant book that moves from medium to medium, place to place, to address multiple, unstable identities and affiliations—quantic, it changes just by being observed. (This is also a portrait built of love.) I know not too many people who could sustain such an expressive power charge across all that media. But then, if it is true the volcanic Ronaldo V. Wilson contains multitudes, it is also the case that there is no other artist quite like him."

–Cyriaco Lopes

"Ronaldo Wilson’s Carmelina: Figures offers a subtle and energetic portrait of a deeply layered relationship between son and mother, bleeding beyond the margins of gender conformity, and haunted by histories of militarism and the collective search for joy in the face of past, and future, death. Movement and gesture are revealed as forms of inherited truth; elusively rendered through raw drawings and sinuous photographs, the body’s memories become the artist’s richest memorial substance."

–Jennifer A. González