In Ecuador, during the night of 31 December to 1 January, the country’s streets are transformed into a folklorique traditional woodshed
To celebrate the New Year, each family burns a large doll, a human figure made of wood and wallpaper, dressed in the old rags of the house in a flokorique traditional
Nowdays this dolls has beacome more than a simple handmade human size representation, bringing out the best of sculptural process to create hyper realistiques figures that comes out from all kind of references and styles, the Quema del Año Viejo – is the firing of the past year.
Guayaquil, the Pearl of the Pacific, the economic capital of Ecuador, the country’s largest city, and the largest port on the west coast of Latin America, is the epicentre of this gigantic combustion. The dolls are the object of all the attention – competitions, sound tuning with clandestine firecrackers. . .
The Quema was founded at the end of the 19th century. In 1895, a yellow fever epidemic threatened the population of Guayaquil. As a health measure, on the last day of this year, branches and straw were tied to the deceased’s clothes and burned in the streets, hoping to drive away disease and despair.
Over time, the Quema del Año Viejo has become a ritual of purification, a conjuration of evil fate and the purging of negative energies of the year that is coming to an end. This gigantic pyre, by annihilating the past, violently celebrates the arrival of the new year. A pyromaniac ritual of regenerating time, energy and projection into the future.