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Aguatierra. JUAN JOSE CALARCO
(Unfathomless 2011)

“A flow from which the discontinuities of time and space try to create a continuous narrative through the wandering into two landscapes of artificial islands”.

-Juan José Calarco from Aguatierra notes

Trying to create and un-define a territory using a linear time media such as the sound piece is inevitably a narrative exercise. Considering the impossibility of being in two places at the same time such scenario would entail another impossible, not being in any place at all; the semantic considerations have repercussions on the conceptual considerations of the semantics and this makes sense when we consider that Aguatierra is actually about the lack of a territory and the need to create the image of one to deal with this unfulfilled need; this is instrumented by putting together memories from alien territories to build the memory of this non-geographical place.

When reviewing Aguatierra‘s method of work, we face intuitive considerations on the artist side that leads us to look for the poetic content in a deeper level, on the formality of his work. The artist adresses the spatial element by making abstract use of concrete material which creates a narrative absent of linear considerations on space and time and instead presented as a series of spacial cues gesturally thrown into the timeline in a way that they create this disorientating experience similar to waking up in an unfamiliar space over and over. This is where strong poetics emerge: The ecological park of Xochimilco and the Reserve Otamendi are connected with each other only in a perceptual level and to make this perceptive experience habitable Calarco builds this non-geographical territory.

The feeling of disorientation depicted by overlapping specialties helps building up a sense of uprooting and abandonment and this is when a territory is needed, this is where the subject becomes matter, this is when Aguatierra is the most effective at, making a territory out of a blur perception of space instrumented through this very effective sort of non-linear gestural narrative.

-Alan Smithee

Juan José Calarco website
Unfathomless website