My art is rooted in the land that shaped me, and the stories it continuously tells.
I claim the body as a space for narratives that defy categorization, that grow in the peripheries, I seek the animistic territories stored in the depth of thoughts, while also building a social practice that centers storytelling and story keeping.
I see the body as a vessel for the most primal creative force, and I know the necessity to dream inter-species and co-create with the earth.
I am interested in the performative maps that the body stores, specifically in connection to indigeneity, ecology, sound and resilience, which I explore through a variety of mediums as photography, performance, ceramic and sound objects.
When I contemplate the earth, I travel to the past and future simultaneously and this act of contemplation, ignites the soul.
Seeking to understand my own heritage and the sonic and oral traditions that have populated the Americas for millennia; I think in compositions; what needs to be composed in order to develop a language that connects memory and universe, the human and the cell. With this in mind; departing from systems theory, the theater of the real, deep ecology and my ongoing investigation on ritual and sound; I look into pre-Columbian sonic instruments as a way to repair, reclaim and reimagine temporalities that can bring on healing, tell stories across borders and honor the land.
In my current research/practice I reconstruct pre-Columbian instruments, performing them, teaching how to make them, and creating large sonic sculptures with faunae iconographies from my own ecological heritage in order to access a sonic cosmology that is entrenched in the pulsation of the earth, a pulsation that is an animated prayer.
I imagine how ancestral sound and ritual can ultimately help us engage with intersectional technologies that have the potential to interrupt imperialism and ecological degradation in order to tend to the earth and heal mutually.
We must remember everything, especially those things we never knew.
Karen Miranda-Rivadeneira Koyoltzintli is an interdisciplinary artist, a visionaire, and educator living in upstate New York. She grew up in the coast of Ecuador and the Andes, geographies that permeate in her work. She focuses on geopoetics, archeology, ritual and storytelling through collaborative processes and personal narratives. Intersectional theories, and earth-based healing informs her practice. Nominated for Prix Pictet in 2019, her work has been exhibited in the National Portrait Gallery in Washington, DC, the United Nations, Aperture Foundation, and the Photographic Museum of Humanity, among others. She has been an artist in residence in the US, France, and Italy and has taught at CalArts, SVA, ICP, and CUNY. Rivadeneira has received multiple awards and fellowships including the Photographic Fellowship at the Musee du Quai Branly in Paris, NYFA Fellowship, and the IA grant by the Queens Council of the Arts. Her first monograph Other Stories was published in 2017 by Autograph ABP, her work was featured in the Native issue of Aperture Magazine (no. 240) last fall and her work was included in the book Latinx Photography in the United States by Elizabeth Ferrer published this year in January.
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When [in the world] one sees nothing else,
hears nothing else, recognizes nothing else:
that is [participation] in the infinite.
But when one sees, hears and recognizes only otherness:
that is smallness. the infinite is immortal, that which is small is mortal.
But Sir, that infinite, upon what is it established?
Upon its own greatness -- or rather, not upon greatness.
for by greatness people understand cows and horses, elephants, gold, slaves, wives, estates.
that is not what I mean; not that. For in that context everything is established on something else.
This infinite of which I speak is below. It is above. It is to the east, to the west, to the south and to the north.
It is in fact, this whole world.
And accordingly, with respect to the notion of ego:
I also am below, above, to the east, to the west, to the south and to the north. I, also am this whole world.