Naufus Ramirez-Figueroa, born in Guatemala in 1978 and a naturalized Canadian citizen at an early age, now lives between Guatemala and Vancouver. He holds a bachelor’s degree in media art from Emily Carr University in Vancouver and a master’s in visual art, performance art and sculpture from the Art Institute of Chicago. He works with ephemeral materials such as candy, fruit, dirt and fireworks, creating performances in which he uses limited periods of time to create intense aesthetic and psychological experiences. Ramirez-Figueroa combines academic research with fieldwork, revisiting, exploring, recreating and reinventing the historical parameters that inform the identity of various ethnic groups in a manner conscious and critical of the power dynamics at work in a given situation by virtue of a shared colonial past. The Guatemalan civil war is a recurring topic in his work which, although often softened by an absurd and humorous approach, conceals tragic elements that bring to mind the memory of past social injustices. Caldo de Zopilote, a video made in June 2012 in Guatemala especially for ORANGE, shows the artist preparing a soup made, not with chicken as is the case in Mayan mortuary tradition, but with the flesh of a predatory bird.
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