In Latin America, those populations under the threat of a plague, would make bundles with straw, sticks and clothes belonging to their dead relatives, to then burn them on the street on the last day of the year, thus, chasing the plague and disillusionment away.
This ancient tradition, of pagan origin, called “El Año Viejo” (the "Old Year") today consists of the making of a rag doll dressed in the old clothes of whoever makes it; it is stuffed with paper, sawdust or any other flammable element, and then burned at midnight, on the last day of the year. The rag doll represents the past, and through the burning and the purification the fire produces, you start a new cycle, leaving behind the things in life you wish to let go of. In some
places, a list of things that you want to abandon, leave behind, or forget is also written, and it is then put inside one of the rad doll’s pocket before burning it.
After a year of pandemic and global confinement, we invite you to elaborate and burn your personal or collective “Old Year”(RagDoll 2020), and to write a list of all you do not wish to repeat next year.
1. Pick a personal garment that grew old with you during this year.
2. Ask other people (your family or neighbors) for other clothes items until you complete an outfit.
3. Make a rag doll out of all the garments that you collected.
4. Fill it with things that will give it consistency and that will allow it to burn easily (newspapers, more old clothes, straw, foam, etc.)
5. Make a list of all the things from 2020 that you would like to get rid of, and place it inside the ragdoll.
6. Find a public place / space where you can burn it safely.
7. Burn your 2020 rag doll at midnight, before January 1, 2021.
8. Take a photo of your rag doll once it’s finished, and another one while it is burning, and share them with by sending them to the following email address: firstname.lastname@example.org.
*Photos will be received until January 31, 2021. The photos we receive will be published here.