Humming Birds in Mexico and Corbin Team up and Save us 2012-13

Humming birsds in Mexico and Corbin Team Up and Save Us, 2012-13, undertaken as part of a Corbin Union Residency, Canada, engages with the globalized nature of the modern mining industry, and the many layered cultural intersections inadvertently produced. Researching the Canadian mining industry, I discovered that a Vancouver based silver mining company – First Majestic Silver – purchased the rights to mine the Wirikutu mountains in Mexico. Of great importance to the local people, the mountains have international heritage status. Local traditions use anthropomorphic rituals – one of which is to impersonate the ruby throated humming bird. These same birds migrate from Mexico back to Canada, where they are also a ritual motif for the local indigenous populations in the North. The humming bird feeders both attract the birds for field recordings, while also existing as ongoing sculptural objects. The audio recorded was mixed with recordings of the birds in Mexico, and played in an abandoned mine. A copy of this final audio was pressed to vinyl record along with a specialy designed poster, with copies sent to both First Majestic Silver in Canada, and to the Wirikutu Defence League, in Mexico. In the same way that man becomes bird in separated ritualized performances, here the audio becomes object, and is able to transcend normal dualistic reality through transformative labour and production.