Venice Architecture Biennale -2023
ECC/European Culture Centre - "Space Time Existence" - May 20th to Nov 26th
The installation consists of a series of Obelisk Crystals embodying Earth, Water & Sun, conveying a vital message: we must act now to create a foundation for a possible positive future. Aftermath is a consequential study in discarded materials that we humans leave behind, questioning the viewer – What will happen Next? How will the Earth regenerate? What comes out of the Ashes?
These are questions that Soledad illuminates through her installation. Transforming waste into a thought-provoking expression, consisting of 123 sculptures incorporating detritus of a contemporary civilization searching for a way not to extinguish itself. Aftermath is a stark reminder of the effect of consumption, accelerating climate change on our vital Gaia.
Soledad collected all the materials encapsulated in the installation during months of coastal foraging, from blue mussels in Maine to beach waste cleaning in Miami with the Surfrider Foundation - dedicated to protecting the world’s oceans - as well as discarded rubbish from her own home. This is how she sees the world today; we live in a juxtaposition between beauty and decay.
Drawing on the Artist’s experience as a gemologist and geology, combined with her background in jewelry, she has added recycled gold flakes and brass nuggets, which humanity has been repurposing for centuries. An ode to the Sun with the first Obelisk depiction tracing to ancient Egypt, representing the Sun God Ra. It is believed its shape symbolizes a single sun ray. Some of the Crystals contain a message, a nod to how the recent pandemic popularized “viral quotes”, how we perceive them and their effect on us, if any.
Each Obelisk Crystal is cast in several layers, created by hand with Biodegradable environmentally friendly epoxy. Natural pigments were used to tint them, ochre and burnt umber from quarries in Roussillon, France and Indigo from Santa Barbara, USA.
Photos - Celia D. Luna