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THE LAST PART OF THE BODY

Noé Martínez

30 Octubre de 2019 - 23 Febrero de 2020

Espacio de exhibición: Fachada

Curaduría: Adriana Melchor

On the Sala de Arte Publico Siqueiros’ building façade, we showcase an intervention commissioned to the Mexican artist, which alludes to the worldview of the Huastec-Nahua culture from San Luis Potosí. Resembling wind carillons, the work, made with aluminum plaques and obsidian, ceramic and shell incrustations, produces sounds that, according with the aforementioned worldview, reveal the presence of the spirits of the ancestors.

 

The placing of these aluminum series resembles the leafs of a cosmic tree. An important cult in the Teenek community—name with which the huastec groups name themselves—, where the treetops communicate with the sky and the roots communicate with the earth to care for and reestablish the equilibrium of life. Martinez’s intervention also explores the transformation of the body into a sound spirit, which is the final vestige of our existence. The murmur or the howling of the wind indicates the presence of a relative or loved one. Sonorous matter in the Husatec worldview occupies a fundamental role, as we can see in the huapango as a musical genre, the healing rituals accompanied by percussions and other particular sounds, or the rolling of thunder in the sky as the advent of an agricultural cycle.

The piece is inscribed in the artist’s constant attempt to trace the processes of recognition of indigenous communities and to make them visible, and also as a part of a personal search into his family’s history, which bears a clear de-colonial political stance. These concerns range from the exploration of language and the rescue of native tongues, slavery, political processes and those of self-government, to social memory as an exercise of resistance. Therefore, the work is presented as part of the Siqueiros Project’s interest in cultural and artistic explorations that work around the tensions of arts and politics, closely linked to social problems.