The place where I am You at Armadillo Leipzig

June 5-27th, 2022

“The place where I am You, equals Ourselves” is an esteemed verse of Piedra de sol (Sun Stone) poem by Octavio Paz. This exhibition explores weaving elements from four connecting bodies of work produced during the pandemic inquiring on relational ways of being and knowing in/on the world. The crisis of climate change, the outbreaks of infection, and the menace of war offer a portal to other ways of being-in-relation. We are coming back to the awareness of ancient times: being alive is to be interwoven with the praxis (what is known as lived) of others: people, the land, the world.

Sound Migrations is a music-video performance and installation that questions our position before nature. Are we mere observers? The collaboration between Meredith Bates (experimental violin,) Lief Hall (voice and effects) and Josema Zamorano (visual media) converged in a dialogue between aural, visual, textual, and spatial experiences, reflecting on the living connectedness between one and (one’s) another: sound becoming body movement, voice becoming ocean waves, music becoming awareness of space, wind becoming texture, the forest becoming cellular copulation, colour becoming mood, perception becoming the environment itself. The audio-video installation at this exhibit captures a recording of one of Sound Migrations performances during the theatrical presentations at Western Front (Vancouver, Canada, October 2020.) The video-performance part was created in dialogue with the sound environment by using a digital camera as an instrument to “play” abstracted natural landscapes and produce moving colour fields.

The landscapes for Sound Migrations are part of the series of photomontages Atl-Tlachinolli: Her(e) on the Land, composed in situ under the influence of the Canadian Rocky Mountains during 2020 right after the first pandemic lockdown. Atl-Tlachinolli means “Burning-Water” in ancient Nahuatl language of Mexico, a concept and symbol of the vital contradiction. The show explores avenues for putting these photomontages alongside the visual/textual poems of La Física del Deseo / The Physics of Desire: Philosophiæ Naturalis, which reimagine the principles of physics as relational epistemologies: love, being-with-others, erotic energy, connectedness. Two installations and a book offer participatory playgrounds, places to be-in-relation.

The book Nahui Ollin or The Physics of Desire: a Philosophiæ Naturalis allows for making-your-own visual/textual poems. Nahui Ollin (“Four-Movement” in Nahuatl) is a fundamental concept of the ancestral and relational epistemologies of Mexico and Mesoamerica. It denotes the balanced joining of opposites necessary for creation/transformation to occur; as well, it represents the current era of the Fifth Sun becoming alive via the presence of the history of the four previous eras. Simultaneously, it refers to the goddess of life, Quetzal–Coatl, the bird (sky) uniting with the serpent (earth), or Kukulan in Mayan tradition.

With thanks to Takt Berlin Leipzig for organizing, and also to German Neu Start Kultur and for some of the pieces thanks to the support from Canada Council for the Arts and British Columbia Arts Council.

Etkar-André-Str. 29, 04157 Leipzig