GRANDMOTHERS’SONGS: MEDITATION WITH ARTIST LEONEL VÁSQUEZ
27 May 2021
Colombian artist Leonel Vásquez argues that the world we live in expresses itself through sound. Life is the vibration of matter, and non-human life such as rivers are not silent –yet many of us cannot hear them. Are they being silenced, or are we choosing not to listen?Through self-crafted devices resembling gramophones, Vásquez amplifies the sounds of stones he collects from the Bogotá river, an unhealthy and contaminated river in Colombia. For many communities, these stones are considered grandmothers –in their silence, they contain the voice of a time in which our own history is insignificant. Join us in listening to these grandmothers’ voices, to become attuned to the sounds of non-human bodies around us and to meditate to their song.
This event will be in Spanish and English, moderated by Diego Chocano.
Image credit: Leonel Vásquez, singing stones from the Canto rodado project (2019)
Leonel Vásquez (Colombia, 1981) is a sound artist and art lecturer at the Universidad de Los Andes in Bogotá. His practice exploressound as a substance that mouldssensory experiencethrough vibrations that travel through space and acquire the form of sculptures, audio-visual installations and sonic architectures. Vásquez developsways of buildingspace, artefacts and experiences that focus on listening in surroundings of social and environmental conflict. His work explores the silence and memories of water-landscapes, sub-marine sounds and the democratisation of underwater listening. He has worked as a researcher and cultural manager for projects with the Radio Nacional de Colombia and the Ministry of Culture. He has exhibited work at the Festival de Arte Sonoro Tsonami in Chile, the Open Art International Biennial in Sweden,and has completed numerous artist residencies.
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.