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Centro Cultural de España en Tegucigalpa


about rastros / restos
“...Pavel Aguilar works like Chavajal, de-composing technologies from music to create sound art. He uses sonograms of testimonial records related to Central American migration to Mexico and the United States.

The work by Aguilar that I wish to share is "Rastros / Restos" (2017). This work prints the sonogram of the frequency of a human voice on a piece of pine wood.

The artist explains that they are, "Sound waves recorded on pieces of wood collected from the homes of illegal immigrants who returned to Honduras. Each has the testimony of the journey and their experience crossing the border undocumented."

The pine boards used in the work were collected by the artist, who obtained them from the project "A Roof for My Country." This detail is relevant to multispecies decolonial studies. To contextualize, during the government of Miguel Paz Barahona, by agreement No. 429, issued on May 14, 1928, the pine tree (Pinus Oocarpa) was declared the national tree of Honduras.

This decision seems to be related to the fact that pine is the tree that predominates naturally in these territories. The relationship between the evidence of human migration and the timber of local trees is really disturbing.

The sonogram of anthropogenic noise is tattooed on the dead wood that contains the record of the tree's life. The lines we see in the wood, below the sonogram, are the result of concentric spirals that mark the growth of the species. Two testimonies are thus juxtaposed. This piece materializes the contingent histories of a wounded planet in Haraway's terms.

It simultaneously adds two sonograms: that of the tree's life and the testimony of human life. Therefore, I try to think of auralities of wounded worlds, rather than Central American sound art.

Thereby I weave my research as a multi-species testimony of living-with and dying-with. For me, art historiography based on authors and works that conform genealogies and canons must be decolonized from exercises of disobedience such as these that question westernism and anthropocentrism...”

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