A group exhibition featuring the work of Guadalupe Maravilla, Grace Rosario Perkins, and Efraín Rozas. The three artists create paintings, sculptures and instruments that draw on both indigenous traditions and invented personal practices, in order to fortify and reorient the self amidst conditions of displacement and global capitalism. Hailing from El Salvador, New Mexico, and Peru, respectively, Maravilla, Perkins, and Rozas embrace ritual as a contemporary technology—one that can be made, and remade by individuals in response to immediate concerns. The exhibition’s title, which takes its name from a painting by Perkins, speaks to the generative, energetic life of their practices and their immeasurable, if capacious effects.
Music plays a part of the conversation. Efraín Rozas contributes a robotic instrument that improvises continuously on Batá drums, according to a polyrhythmic, Latin American sensibility. Rozas, who moved to New York from Lima in 2010, is a composer, performer, and robotics/software developer interested in expanding the possibilities of electronic music technology to accommodate non-Western forms of knowledge and sociality. Primera Prótesis (First Prosthesis), was built by Rozas using a custom software, which is a generative algorithm drawing from concepts of rhythm used in Santeria and Yoruba rituals—a major influence on Latin American sound—and Rozas' personal ideas of time. The piece is part of a larger musical project called Myth and Prosthesis, which asks how we might develop our own technologies—our own prostheses—that resist the interiorized hold that capitalism and colonial histories have over our dreams, delusions, and daily life. Can we develop new grammars, and myths, which might forge a new reality? For Rozas, music is one way forward. The robot, which resides normally at the heart of the artist’s home, functions as an altar and space for deep listening, as well as a motor for free movement and dance.
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