On Holes and Heaps is a site-specific lecture and love/hate letter to the turbulent times we (might) find ourselves in. Alvarez will publicly reflect about his life and artistic practice in relation to the physical qualities of holes and heaps, as well as the psychological and socio-environmental effects these have in our lives. Using personal anecdotes, images, sound, text messages, film excerpts, and philosophy; Alvarez will survey the perils of extractivism, accumulation by dispossession, and the outdated techno-utopian promises we have been immersed in. Perhaps not with the intention to drill something already familiar to us, but to inspire a more collective and restorative utopian imagination.
Born and raised in Lima, Peru, Sebastian Alvarez is an interdisciplinary artist living and working in the Bay Area. Alvarez's research-based work manifests in film, infographics, performative lectures, sonic compositions, and walks. In recent years, he has participated in a performance collective at San Quentin State Prison in collaboration with incarcerated artists, and produced a sci-fi documentary about the imaginative and material processes of building utopian communities in Brazil’s capital, Brasilia. Alvarez has performed, curated, and presented work internationally at such venues and institutions as Headlands Center for the Arts, Southern Exposure, Yerba Buena Center for the Arts; Townhouse Gallery, Egypt; the École Nationale Supérieure d'Art Bourges, France; and Wiener Festwochen, Vienna.
Image: Sebastian Alvarez, The Cycle of Life, 2016. Durational performance; 9 days (5 hours each). Video Stills by Ilya Pusenkoff. Courtesy the artist.