In the foggy páramo near Bogota, De Valdenebro stages acts of becoming different states of hydrological cycles, making her body permeable to mist, lake, and wind. The páramos, Colombia’s highland ecosystems located 3000 metres above sea level, are fundamental to the health of the country’s water networks. that flows through the country’s freshwater networks and out to the Pacific Ocean and Caribbean seas. These videos are part of an art research project called Cuerpospermeables (Permeablebodies) which documents intimate contact zones that the artist instigates between bodies.
In these videos, the artist performs acts of integration into other elemental states of being, where air and water act upon the human body, entering and caressing, buffeting and inflating. In Laguna (Lake), the action takes on an ecopolitical dimension, as the artist makes a ritual offering to the bodyof water. De Valdenebro takes solid gold cufflinks (an heirloom from her own family) cast in the form of Colombia’s national crest, smelting them into an organic form, then depositing them back into the watery depths. In this contemporary ritual, she reverses the process of extraction which exerts pressure on the country’s páramos and other liquid territories where mining agendas push into protected ecosystems.
Eulalia De Valdenebro
Eulalia De Valdenebro is a visual artist, lecturer, botanist and researcher. Informed by posthumanism, her practice-based research explores the continuities between vegetal and human life, with an emphasis on Colombia’s páramos, highland ecosystems that are vital aquifers. Valdenebro is a current PhD candidate in Art and Ecosophy at Université Paris 8, holds a Master’s in Visual Arts from Universidad Nacional de Colombia and graduated from the School of Fine Arts at Universidad del País Vasco and the Atelier de Peinture Botanique. She has held artist residencies in Remalard France, Banff Centre, Canada, Honda Flora Arts+Natura, and the Museo deAntioquia. She was a guest lecturer at Université Paris 8 in 2017 and 2021, and in 2014, created a living sculpture titled Nativas/Foráneas with Andean Forest flora forUniversidad Tadeo Lozano.
Live Streams is curated by Lisa Blackmore (School of Philosophy & Art History and the Centre for Interdisciplinary Studies, University of Essex), Diego Chocano (Assistant Curator of Essex Collection of Art from Latin America/University Art Collections) and Emilio Chapela (Artist and Research Assistant at the University of Essex). This website was built by David Medina.
Art Exchange is the University of Essex’s on-campus gallery dedicated to exhibiting contemporary art from emerging and established international artists. It is directed by Jess Twyman.