ancestors of a future extinction

Project nominated for the Luis Caballero XII Award
Santa Fe Gallery, July 13 to August 25.

Glaciers are compacted waters from old snowfall exposed to the dynamics of time: they accumulate ice and release water, they receive and deliver. They are moving masses of ice. The freezing of a time put into rotation. They are the fluctuations of the ice, of the rocky debris and of the veils of ash, which gradually roll down the highest slopes. They are future contained rivers. Glaciers are changing and dynamic, they directly depend on the extreme atmospheric conditions of the high mountains. The white snowflakes transform and compact to the blue of the glacial ice, the slow descent extracts the air bubbles that diffract the light to reach the depth of the glacial indigo, rude and ancestral. Its rigidity is apparent, it breaks and cracks as a sign of fluidity. Sheltered by the earth, the water seeps in without compensating for the loss. Between the fissures, the UV rays and the increase in temperature weaken the ice, drops of water that run through the glacier basin, the ablation zone or withdrawal line. At the edge of 5,000 masl, the last glaciers in the tropics are a rarity thanks to their equatorial latitude and altitudinal elevation. Despite their imbalance, they are resilient and changing ecosystems. In a few decades, glaciers will no longer exist, which will directly affect biodiversity and the cycle of water resources.

Glacier bodies, water ancestors of a future extinction follows up on surrounding glaciers from a hand-to-hand agency projected in stories that intersect scientific studies, affections, mappings and fictions. The installation presents a space for archiving, visualization and experimentation of these territories from a sensitive approach, situated and transdisciplinary knowledge. It is an exchange with specialists that opens joint reflection, where science, poetry and art projects the fragile state of an ecosystem sensitive to climate change.

Starting from personal experience, it insists on keeping the active link with the mountain, where attention to changes makes visible the vulnerability of the landscape that, like the body, wears out, gets tired, polluted and fractured. With the story, the cartography and the audiovisual montage, a kinship is pursued that nurtures communication and exchange with nature, making fiction intertwine conversations that include an ancestral conception, a shared body and joint care.

The Supreme Court of Justice in 2020 declares and orders that the Los Nevados National Natural Park be considered to Being Subject to Special Protection Rights. It is a call that, from a legal and scientific approach, recognizes the mountain as an interactive system, a self-regulated conglomerate formed by a multiplicity of living organisms and biological processes. A legal recognition and a symbolic position that is rooted in the territory from different perspectives that cross the political and the biological; a way of conceiving the mountain as a symbiotic fabric that acts and intervenes in its own history and in ours.

This follow-up reveals changes and proposes ways of speculation that recognize new forms of coexistence and co-creation in alterity with nature. Imaginaries are raised that coincide with possible actions to resume hope as an indispensable link and reestablish an essential relationship with the environment. Fictional alternative futures that are the sum of both animistic and scientific knowledge. It is a call to the fable that honors the bodies of water and their ancestral forms. It is the urgency for a necessary account of a possible extinct landscape, whose image is the only thing we can reinvent and re-experience.

The exhibition presents a journey through three sections. The first forms an archive and laboratory space in which a historical imaginary about records of the glacier is compiled; made up of photographic documents, drawings in situ, maps and paintings, which open a space for topographic and landscape dissemination of the evolution of these ecosystems. In this scenario, the activations and conversations that promote actions to poetically and cartographically map the snow-capped Tolima will take place.

In the second section, panoramic views of the territory are presented from the proximity of the travel notebooks and the numerical distance of the expanded models of point clouds. And in the third section, the video installation immerses the viewer in an intimate conversation with the mountain, in an experimental film: Between the volcano and the slope.


July 13 // Opening : Glacial bodies
Inauguration Santa Fe Gallery.
July 14 // Scientific Monitoring and Research-Sound Creation.
4:00 pm Lecture: “Two decades of monitoring the Snowy Santa Isabel Volcano” Jorge Luis Ceballos (IDEAM Institute of Hydrology, Meteorology and Environmental Studies)
6:00 pm Sound presentation “Between the volcano and the slope” Sergio Andrés Castrillón (Sibelius Academy-Helsinki University of the Arts)
July 28 // Participatory Monitoring
10:00 am Lecture “Participatory Monitoring Network of the Nevado Volcán Tolima”. Saida Martinez and Andres Cruz
11:30 am ‘Visualization and experiences of the 6 Colombian glaciers‘. Juan Camilo Otalvaro
3:00 pm Open Glacier Cartography Laboratory together with the Tolima Participatory Monitoring Network.
August 4 // Niñapajaroglaciar, poetics and activism
10:30 am Lecture “Niñapájaroglaciar” Mariana Matija, (Rey Naranjo Editorial).
3:00 pm ‘Workshop on glacier poetics and others cares?, Mariana Matija and Natalia Castañeda
August 18 // Cartographies from affection
10:30 am Lecture “Cartographies from affection” Mónica Naranjo, (Nómada Ediciones).
3:00 pm Encounter: different perspectives to narrate the snow-capped Dulima volcano, guests: Saida Martinez, Andrés Cruz, Juan Camilo Otalvaro, Mariana Matija, Marcela Fernandez de Cumbres Blancas y Natalia Castañeda.

Julia Calle, Sergio Castrillón, Jorge Luis Ceballos, David Koral, Orlando Castañeda, María Calle Guerrero, Saida Martínez, Marc Oliva, Helena Calafell, Virginia Expósito, Sonia Goute, Natalia Castrillón, Gonzalo Muruaga, Llapispanc, Santiago Dussan, Carlos Hurtado, Eliana Baquero, Simón Velez, Diego Bustamante, Javier Ferreira, Juan Camilo Otalvaro, Juan Felipe Castiblanco Céspedes, Heïdi Sevestre, Ixeia Vidaller.

Special thanks:

To Kumanday, Poleka-Kasue and Dulima, mountains, homeland that have allowed me to travel and reflect with them for years; as well as the people who have accompanied me on these tours, IDEAM headed by glaciologist Jorge Luis Ceballos, the route and monitoring team of the region, and all the people who in some way protect and care for these mountains since a compromised place

Julia Calle, Sergio Castrillón, David Koral, Orlando Castañeda, Andrés Cruz, María Calle Guerrero, Santiago Dussan, Saida Martínez, Marc Oliva, Helena Calafell, Virginia Expósito, Natalia Castrillón, Gonzalo Muruaga, Llapispanc, Juan Camilo Otalvaro, Carlos Hurtado, Eliana Baquero, Simón Vélez, Diego Bustamante, Javier Ferreira, Juan Felipe Castiblanco Céspedes, Heïdi Sevestre, Ixeia Vidaller, Francisco Rojas Heredia, Esteban Juiz, Nueveochenta, Red de Monitoreo Participativa del Tolima, Diego Pérez, Sebastian Castañeda, Maru Lopez, Cumbres Blancas, Juanita Hincapié, Carmen Tulia Arbeláez, Dania Palacios, Valeria Castañeda, Nicolás Castañeda, Bibiana Crespo, Manolo Laguillo, Laura Puerta, Asumpta Bassas, Colección Salazar Hernandez, Heidi Maldonado, Orlando Guerrero, Adalberto Ceballos, Chemary Carrera Pons and the entire team at Galería Santa Fe.



Jorge Luis Ceballos

Colección Salazar Hernández

Adalberto Ceballos

Juan Camilo Otalvaro

Red de Monitoreo Participativa del nevado-volcán Tolima

Colección de Arte del Banco de la República

Biblioteca Luis Ángel Arango

Biblioteca Nacional de Colombia

IPE, Instituto Pirenaico de Ecología, CSIC

Volver arriba