La Ofrenda – Martín Rodríguez

Event Details

As of November 1st, 2019, the installation La Ofrenda by artist Martín Rodríguez opens the next programming cycle of TOPO’s Showcase under the theme of Frontier, which will run until 2021. The program includes exhibitions in the ground floor showcase of the Pôle de Gaspé, workshops, performances, projections and artist presentations.

The first cycle, « Cultures, Languages, Spiritualities: Beyond Borders », brings together three artists from the plurality of the Americas who explore the reconquest of roots and legacies, through questions about memory and death.

Find out more about Frontier programming and thematic cycles

La Ofrenda, (The Offering) is an installation inspired by the artist’s experience of being in remission from a brain tumor and asks how do we find hope when greeting death. This installation expresses these sentiments by exploring the wonder found in the specter of death through the transformation of the sounds and images of the artist’s Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) into an enchanted audiovisual altar. This work finds inspiration in the altars found in the homes and businesses of Mexicans during the Dia de Muertos, a time of the year where one is able to communicate with the souls of the departed.

The fog of chemo and numbness of radiation. The brain surgery. Paralysis. The seizure that exposed it all. The sterile sounds of the hospital. One must find a way to survive.

This sonic offering is created by harnessing the sounds of the artist’s MRI through transducers attached to the strings and the body of the guitar. The result is a blend of musical notes, machine noise, and radio frequencies. In turn these sounds control video images of his MRI, installed inside an old tube radio. This work vicariously explores the artist’s mortality in an effort to reconcile his understanding of impermanence.