Deuzani and I are going to New York!
We couldn’t imagine that this will happen when we first met. Who would have thought that tight embrace would be the beginning of an incredible partnership and a friendship for life.
Deuzani Gomes dos Santos is one of these special women, an artisan from the Jequitinhonha Valley with a vision of the world clearer than many of the people living in great metropolis. In addition to creating ceramic pieces using traditional techniques that originated with indigenous women, she goes to the countryside, takes care of the house, the family, receives guests through solidarity tourism and also writes poetry that has such depth that touches the soul .
We met in July 2016 but it was in January 2017 when I stayed with her that we really met. There, staying in her house, realizing her life and her claw, that Records of Time collection was born. Each piece carries with it a bit of Deuzani, whether through pottery or inspiration. Her calm to face the difficulties of life taught me to look at time otherwise, to understand it and respect it.
It was along with Deuzani’s help and affection that I created the Table Lamp Ni, one of the pieces that I believe best sums up what I love to do: to shed light on the incredible work of Brazilian artisans. This lamp highlights the painting done with the last feather of the chicken wing (which needs to fall naturally!), using paints extracted from the clay itself and stones of the region. Something unique and delicate, which is only made there, in the Jequitinhonha Valley.
These pieces now win the world. They will be exhibited at the Unknown Territories exhibition, where Design Pier’s curators from Hong Kong, have selected designers who, somehow, bring to their pieces the cultural traditions and social context of their country. A great honor for me to present, through the pieces of Yankatu, Deuzani’s works representing all these wonderful women artisans who molding the clay managed to change their lives.
With her permission, I reproduce one of her poems and I'm sure you will be delighted with it too.
By Deuzani Gomes do Santos – May 1st, 1996
Woman is more than we think of
She's the art of God, it's love.
Woman is the strong arm of the nation
She is pride for those who know how to value
Woman is the light of home
She is a symbol of affection and heat
Woman is full of harmony
Of secrets that only they have
She carries the most beautiful sources
that springs love like no one else
That in the course of the day to day
Spend time planting the good
Single woman, mother woman
That fights for the family
Who is still enslaved
Resistant of this valley
loaded by pains
Beautiful woman, transparent soul
In your face, hope
Black woman with a white soul
In working, strong.
In society, with few jobs
In politics, we wish we could...
I want to see women.
Hand in hand, in a chain
Fighting for their rights
Changing steps forward
We will get there.
To see a woman president
If we join our forces
Certainly in the future
We will have to our children
A much safer country
And our society
Will have mature fruits
Woman raise your head
It wags dust and comes
Get in this movement with us
You are important too.
Let your task for a minute
Time waits for no one ...