Guadalupe Maravilla, Disease Thrower #13

2024 05 15 13 02 51

Guadalupe Maravilla, Disease Thrower #13, 2021..

Photo: Therese Manus / Henie Onstad Kunstsenter

Guadalupe Maravilla, Disease Thrower #13 (2021)

Guadalupe Maravilla (b. 1976, El Salvador) is a visual artist who lives and works in Brooklyn, New York. In 2021 he received the Lise Wilhelmsen Art Award. The sculpture was purchased by Henie Onstad with support from the Lise Wilhelmsen Fond after last year's exhibition Sound Botánica, which was Maravilla's first solo exhibition in Europe, as the second recipient of the Lise Wilhelmsen Art Award.

As an eight-year-old, Guadalupe Maravilla immigrated to the United States as a single, undocumented refugee, fleeing the civil war in El Salvador. Many years later, at the age of 35, he fell ill with cancer. Disease Thrower #13 (2021) is one of the sculptures in a series of free-standing sculptures that are made from objects and materials Maravilla collected as he sought out his own migration route as an adult.

The sculpture combines stainless steel tubes with organic forms made from aluminum materials that the artist and his assistants collected and recast. The surface is grainy like coral or rock formations, and the sculpture has a glittering metal gong in the middle.

Maravilla's sculptures are partly inspired by Mayan culture. At the heart of each sculpture, he has placed a gong – a musical instrument consisting of a round metal disk suspended in a frame. Maravilla activates the sculptures, or gongs, in sound baths together with a group of healers trained in a specific healing tradition. This is a meditative experience that takes place with many people together and where the participants "bath" in sound frequencies.