To make contact with the sea.

To anticipate the gathering, to ask permission and connect the territories from a place that strengthens all those involved, from one coast to another.

We embark on the journey and let curiosity guide us. With permission granted to take only what is necessary and to give all that is possible through attentive listening.

In the background the whales hover in the vibrant energy of their song, their sounds reminding us of where we come from. We lie in a canoe once used to escape. We heal here in the present, we heal ancestral wounds.

Between harmony and chaos, we will share the visions of a rebellious spirit that guides us today.

Day 1 // Inspiration and mezmerre

The day of meeting has arrived. From different points on the map, we landed in this coastal town on the Colombian Pacific coast, inhabited by black and indigenous communities who made space for us to come together. We are a total of 46 people. Hortencio told the town that we were here, and with megaphone in hand, the perifoneo of this mezmerre rolled through the streets of mud and stone. From all this presence that we bring, some of us came to remember past trips, others to know Nuquí for the first time. The paths opened up for this intense week of Lumbung Nuqui.

We each improvised a movement after saying who we were in order to help remember each other. We often cracked up with laughter. On a map we wove together the points of our journey, to help understand the different latitudes from which we came.

Photo by PaulaOG

The rain kept us waiting this afternoon to ritualise the beginning. In a circle in the front garden of Amelia’s house, tobacco was lit in the hands of Marley, an indigenous companion from Vaupés in Colombia’s Amazonian region. In puffs of smoke, the tobacco – a gift from a Takuna grandfather – lit with each breath of protection that rested on our heads. She says that in her ethnic group the grandparents do this so that there are no clashes or conflicts between different ways of thinking.

Viche was also the protagonist of the afternoon. An ancestral liquor from the Colombian Pacific whose Afro-descendant producers were persecuted and imprisoned in the past. A symbol of medicine, it is now a potion that they proudly share with us today.

Photo by PaulaOG

“Messages from the sea”
A bath of herbs in the sonorus canoe

Yowar Mosquera and Leonel Vásquez shared with us sounds from the depths of the sea. In a canoe filled with water and medicinal plants, they introduced hydro-speakers with whale songs. Lying inside that canoe and receiving the vibrations of the sound under the water, connected us with memories, sensations, visions that Ericka Flórez in her experience relates as: “Each moment of listening is an opportunity to hear the sound of the whales:

Every moment of listening is an opportunity to open the pores and to make the body something less mechanistic, diagrammatic, discretized.

On that boat I could hear the whales singing, and I felt that this pounding changed the texture of my bones. The invisible matter of sound transforming visible matter.

From mammal to cetacean only because the aural is the world of the continuous, not of the discrete (of the separate). Already without categories, we can all resurrect to this new world. Arise and swim.

Fotografías por PaulaOG