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‘Here, And the Wind’: An exhibition about process

SalmaPaola Baca
Here, And the Wind documents the process behind Experiencing the Bosque led by Sandra Paola López Ramirez, Artist-in-Residence at the Rubin Center.

For the months of March, April and May, a new exhibit has made its appearance at the Rubin Center for the Visual Arts. To coincide with UTEP’s World Water Week, “Here, And the Wind” welcomed visitors March 27. A behind the scenes look at one of UTEP’s productions, “Experiencing the Bosque,” the gallery displays costume pieces, art and digital media showing last semester’s production. With instruction cards for each step of the exhibit, sounds from the performance and a small interactive experience, this project is definitely one to visit in the coming weeks. 

Like “Experiencing the Bosque,” the exhibit highlights the importance of water in the El Paso region. The theme of both projects is water scarcity in our desert home and how water serves as the main source of life for everything. Sandra Paola Lopez Ramirez, a visiting assistant professor at UTEP, faculty liaison for community engaged practices in arts, and Artist-In-Residence at the Rubin Center explains more about these productions. 

“Life depends on it, our life and the life of the planet, the life of our plant relatives or animal relatives, all of us depend on water. That is much more heightened in a region like ours, being a desert where it’s already scarce to have (or) to find sources of water,” Lopez Ramirez said. “I mean, that’s kind of the obvious reason why water issues are important and specifically important to this region. I want people to deepen their relationship (with) water, not only bring attention to water scarcity or issues with accessibility of water and distribution of water, but also looking at what our relationship to water (is) and honoring water as a living being.”  

Lopez Ramirez served as the exhibit’s main organizer. Along with setting up the project, she is also responsible for coordinating some of the dances behind “Experiencing the Bosque.” The gallery is described as one about process and you can definitely see why. Videos of the production are played around the gallery, along with materials used and various artworks explain the environmental message. 

Here, And the Wind documents the performance Experiencing the Bosque, a collaboration between the Rio Bosque Wetlands Park and the Center for Environmental Resource Management. (SalmaPaola Baca)

“So, the exhibition is called ‘Here, And the Wind,’ it’s an exhibition about process. It’s a primordial and archival exhibition that documents the process of ‘Experiencing the Bosque.’ The exhibition takes the public through the entire process of making the performance,” Lopez Ramirez said. “It was a two-year process, and it started with a collective called ‘Somos Agua’ that I helped co-found. The main purpose of the exhibition is both to share what was behind the performance, and (making) the process visible as something that is just as important as the product, which is something that sometimes we don’t see.” 

Throughout the exhibition there are little cards at each point, with instructions on how to “feel” the gallery. Masks and artwork from tapestries to a mood board which helped start production are also displayed in the gallery. Messages written by visitors who saw the performance hang over the entrance of the gallery, welcoming visitors and informing them of the importance of the “Experiencing the Bosque.” There is even a small section that allows you to walk through a short hall of sand, simulating a short experience with the Earth. 

One card read for the sand hall, “1. Step on the dirt. 2. Bend down to touch the EARTH. 3. Caress the earth as you create patterns on the path with your fingers, elbows, hands, knees, toes, nose 4. Rub dirt on your exposed skin (arms, legs, neck, face, hands). Notice the friction AWAKENING the skin 5. Grab a PINCH of SAND. 6. Carry it around for a while. 7. Return it when you are DONE.” 

The exhibition is here until May 26, and is open to everyone. Visitors will not be disappointed, with interactive elements of the exhibition and pieces from “Experiencing the Bosque.” You will be taken on a journey to a special performance at one of El Paso’s important environmental locations. 

 Elisha Nunez is a staff reporter and can be reached at [email protected] 


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About the Contributors
Elisha Nuñez, Staff Reporter
Elisha Nuñez is a multimedia journalism student with a minor in marketing at the University of Texas at El Paso.  He works as a reporter for The Prospector, and loves to write about arts, culture, and people. This semester, he wishes to do more freelance work for publications in and outside of El Paso. After graduation, he would like to experience multiple positions at different places, and even has plans for continuing his current education outside of the U.S.
SalmaPaola Baca, Photographer
SalmaPaola Baca is a senior at UTEP majoring in engineering innovation and leadership with a concentration and minor in civil engineering and an emphasis in computer science. Her passion for photography enables her to be photographer at The Prospector. While a full-time student, she freelances while planning to grow her platform through travel photography. After graduating, she wants to pursue a master’s degree in architecture while working on her photography simultaneously.
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‘Here, And the Wind’: An exhibition about process