Sometimes we make trips to disconnect from our circumstances, our routines and environments, but even in the most unexpected and distant corners we can find pieces of ourselves, in the most unexpected people. KOKO CHE JOTA went to live in China when she was only 16 years old, to discover that truth.
Jumping into the void, sometimes, is the only way out of it.
During the first four months of her stay in the country, which ended up lasting one and a half years, she was housed in a boarding school that, at that time, only welcomed Asian children and, as was normal, they did not know a common language with which they could communicate with her. The only person trying in that place was Leily, who struggled with the minimum of English to make herself understood.
Coincidentally, they ended up sharing an apartment that was divided into two rooms with a common space; and from that common space they held on to avoid falling.
Anyone who has not ever felt complete loneliness while surrounded by thousands of people, may not even understand the bond that you can create with those who, in the midst of chaos, have time to look you in the eye.
She was, really, the first contact with the country, its point of support; They came to establish a very special relationship. They learned and were excited, shared, opened, as if they could not teach without learning, or give without receiving.
Later, KOKO entered the German School in Shanghai and they ended up losing contact. They flew through different and distant realities, flapping, and like a butterfly effect they raised breezes, which joined through the winds, later growing into hurricanes of art, on the other side of the world.
Once again, chance, as it had united them in China, brought them together again on the Internet through a friend, twelve years later. They say that we are all connected by the relationships we form and that, of any other person on the planet we choose, no matter how inaccessible, only five people separate us.
After all, their lives hadn't strayed as far as they'd thought. They had always been a friend away.
Leily had become a musician, a powerful woman in charge of her live. Like KOKO, she had learned from herself, from her surroundings, from her own curiosity, from her tireless practice. Different paths, but the same direction. The expression, the emotion, an anchor in the life of KOKO that should have a unique space also in her art, and from her art.
The new collection, how could it be otherwise, called LEILY, is a transversal collection. It has not existed, but it has been created while other projects were born and died, over the years. Each previous collection has a work dedicated to Leily, but it is now that KOKO has discovered that she had been working on this project for years. One that encompasses all the previous projects, in which she had left a little piece, breadcrumbs to be able to return through the carousel of his life, over and over again.
The works are the result of passion and shared struggles. Tribute to the woman who, unknowingly, motivated her and will motivate Koko throughout her career. People by and for whom it is worth creating and dressing canvases. They are works full of layers and silhouettes, of layers and evolutions, that take you from one side of the chest to the other. Some psychedelic distortions, lyrical metamorphoses of the forms, which melt into hugs.
And in the end, the only constant is the shared blood. Both life and mortality are stored in two drops that appear throughout this series of paintings as symbols of the purest red.
Shared experiences and struggles, this new collection is a tribute to brotherhood, sisterhood and empathy. A hymn to friendship, a motivation to share and be. Perhaps the desire that there are more people willing to create universes around them, without asking for anything in return, someone like LEILY, capable of catching a smile and making it home.