“Pita” is slang for twine. This material is ubiquitous in Guatemala and used for all kinds of daily needs; wrapping vegetables, making bags, funky chairs, hammocks, tieing things down, etc.
After an extended holiday in Guatemala the Brand Family decided to stay on for another year because Kurt was inspired to create new art based on his experiences there. He wasn’t able to find traditional painting materials too easily around Lake Atitlan so he decided to use materials that were common, inexpensive, and easily sourced. This next step in his career proved to be extremely fruitful.
He first sourced some nylon twine that he found in a local tienda and started to make wall art by wrapping the colorful material on wood stretchers made by an assistant in his studio high above the lake. These constructions were beautiful in their minimal simplicity and the nylon twine had a particular sheen that gave the work an interesting pop art-like quality.
After using the pita plastica (plastic) he discovered some hand made twine made from the “maguey” (agave) plant in the highlands of Guatemala. This pita “maguey” or pita “natural” proved to be. a beautiful material to work with and to create his new wall art pieces.
Soon Brand was looking for natural dye to add color to the maguey. Fortunately, these dyes were easily found around Lake Atitlan as they were used daily to create the beautiful textiles the Mayan women were known for.
He hopes to get back to Guatemala soon to continue the practice and create these unique pieces of wall art.