Séance with Extinct Species of Birds
Wednesday, February 13, 2019
199 Richmond St. West
Led by exhibiting artist Naufus Ramírez-Figueroa
Limited availability; registration required
Tickets available as of Wednesday, January 23 at noon
Naufus Ramírez-Figueroa is an exhibiting artist in Onsite Gallery's Winter exhibition, How to Breathe Forever. Since 2012, Naufus Ramírez-Figueroa has conducted intimate spiritist sessions. He describes them as follows, “I (and participants) try to contact the spirit world, specifically contact extinct species of birds. The project is a sort of imagination exercise.” With no images or videos taken, Ramírez-Figueroa documents the experience through audio recordings, visual sound scores and drawings. Séances With Extinct Species of Birds is an ongoing project that prioritizes the supernatural, history, voice and the effect of human activity and climate change on birds, and asks— if we find a new way to listen can we hear birds, even extinct ones?
As a participant you will:
— Participate in a séance
— Consent to have the event’s audio recorded, which may include your voice as a participant, which will be exhibited in Onsite Gallery’s exhibition, How to Breathe Forever
How to Breathe Forever underlines the importance and interconnectedness of air, animals, coral, humans, insects, land, plants and water. The belief that everything in the universe has a place and deserves equal respect is the core of this exhibition and positions our relations with others — including the natural world — as active and reciprocal. The artwork invites you to consider a personhood that attentively collaborates and exchanges with all living things.
How to Breathe Forever is supported by the Canada Council for the Arts, the Ontario Arts Council and Nexus Investments.
Naufus Ramírez-Figueroa was born in Guatemala City in 1978. He received a BFA in Media Arts from Emily Carr Institute of Art and Design, Vancouver in 2006, and an MFA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago in 2008. He was also a postgraduate researcher at Jan Van Eyck Academie, Maastricht, the Netherlands in 2013. Working in drawing, performance, sculpture, and video, Ramírez-Figueroa explores the entanglement of history and form through the lens of his own displacement during and following Guatemala’s civil war of 1960–96. He has had solo exhibitions at Casa de América, Madrid (2011); Akademie Schloss Solitude, Stuttgart (2011); Gasworks, London (2015); and CAPC musée d'art contemporain, Bordeaux (2017), and The New Museum, New York (2018). He has participated in the following group exhibitions: A History of Interventions, Tate Modern, London; Gwangju Biennial, South Korea (both in 2014); Lyon Biennial; The School of Nature and Principle, EFA Project Space, New York (both in 2015); São Paulo Biennial; and the Venice Biennale (2017). Ramírez-Figueroa lives and works in Berlin and Guatemala City.
Onsite Gallery is the flagship professional gallery of OCAD U and an experimental curatorial platform for art, design and new media. Visit our website for upcoming public events. The gallery is located at 199 Richmond St. W, Toronto, ON, M5V 0H4. Telephone: 416-977-6000, ext. 265. Opening hours are: Wednesdays from noon to 8 p.m.; Thursdays and Fridays from noon to 7 p.m.; Saturdays and Sundays from noon to 5 p.m. Free admission.
Image: Naufus Ramírez-Figueroa, Concrete Poem Documentation of Bird Séances, 2011 to present, series of five digital prints on Epson coldpress watercolour paper, calligraphy by Lester Mead, 20” x 29.5” each. Courtesy of the artist.