Introduction | José Roca, FLORA ars+natura Christian Salablanca Díaz

In 2020, FLORA ars+natura decided to set up a new residency programme called Movimientos, with the idea of addressing the idea of territory from the territory itself. Six artists (from Argentina, Brazil, Colombia, Costa Rica, Cuba and The Netherlands) and the FLORA ars+natura team went on a trip to Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta—the heart of the world for the Koguis, Arhuacos, Wiwas and Kankuamos, the four ethnic groups living there, who are all descended from the ancient Tayrona people. For the most part, these indigenous peoples have managed to preserve their languages and their ancestral customs, and have a clear understanding of their purpose in this world: namely, to maintain the balance of the Earth. As part of this field trip we undertook a five-day hike through the jungle to Terunna—the ceremonial centre that had remained hidden and protected by the local community until it was “discovered” in the 1970s—which is now known as Ciudad Perdida, the lost city. Spread out over a large number of stone terraces, Terunna is a unique place, incredibly sophisticated both architecturally and technically speaking. It is also a place with strong spiritual energy. During our time in Terunna, Christian Salablanca was struck by the many formal and conceptual points in common between the place and the Guayabo Monument in his home country of Costa Rica, which he had visited previously. Once he started his residency in Bogotá he began to engage in a dialogue between the two ceremonial centres, based on historical and archaeological sources but also anthropological speculation. Geometría del centro (Geometry of the Centre) is a video poem exploring Salablanca’s reflections on the relationship between the two sites which takes the form of an episodic drawing in the space made with instruments/tools inspired by the forms of the architecture as well as by mapping instruments like plumb lines, sextants and theodolites. It is also accompanied by a soundtrack created by the Mexican sound artist and therapist Daniel Lara Ballesteros.

The production of this project in the midst of difficulties arising from the Covid-19 pandemic was made possible thanks to the collaboration of TBA21.

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26/10 2020
  • Life below water
  • Life on land
  • Peace, justice and strong institutions