curated and produced: joaquín orellana’s paisajes sonoros

I had the unparalleled honor to curate and produce “Paisajes Sonoros,” a retrospective exhibit of maestro Joaquín Orellana’s life and work. This Guatemalan composer has created dozens of haunting and unique pieces throughout his life, all of which invoke Guatemala’s social spheres, physical environs, and political struggles. To do this, Orellana invented his “sound utensils” (útiles sonoros) to create one-of-a-kind sounds that capture particular emotions, settings, and everyday sounds of Guatemala’s soundscape.

I was thrilled to be able to design the concept and spatial layout, as well as curate over 150 of Orellana’s original instruments, scores, drawings, poems, photographs, and posters. This was the first time that all of Orellana’s work had been displayed within his home country of Guatemala.

I directed the production of digital recordings of Joaquín Orellana to accompany the exhibit, because to hear the man explain his work is to delight in his genius. We likewise paired the show with several musical performances and talks about Orellana’s life and work, cumulating in an orchestra concert performed with the pieces on display, within the gallery itself.


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