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| Luminaria Onomatopeya |

“When danger or pain press too nearly, they are incapable of giving any delight, and are simply terrible; but at certain distances, and with certain modifications, they may be, and they are, delightful, as we every day experience”.
-Edmund Burke, Of the sublime and the beautiful
“Luminaria Onomatopeya” as seen at Espacio Diagonal

Exhibit text by Guillermo Rodriguez

In her first individual exhibition in Puerto Rico, Rebecca Adorno presents a series of objects and audiovisual interventions that explore the physical qualities and the plasticity of sound. Adorno explores the idea of ​​a lethal beauty by means of auditory and light responses to the architecture and the acoustic conditions of the Diagonal space.

The exhibition presents “Mecanismo para la luz al final del túnel”, a sound installation with a lighting component. The Mechanism (a kind of architectural harp) employs the diagonal beam that gives name to the space, as a diapason, turning it into a chamber of resonance, while the amplified sound of its strings “illuminates” an adjoining room. “Luminaria Onomatopeya” gathers a series of Infrasonic Hugs, sound sculptures where pairs of subwoofers face each other – a symbolic hug – while absorbing low frequencies. Adorno’s Hugs make visible a phantom acoustic wave that the human ear can not hear, but can feel. The exhibition pose instances where it is possible to perceive and in some way account for events and ungraspable phenomena such as sound and electromagnetic resonance. By accentuating the spectator’s spatial awareness, the entire exhibit functions as a perceptual mechanism; the pieces operate as sensitive devices.

Luminaria recounts an investigation where Adorno proposes ways to approach the phenomenon that she describes as “lethal beauty”; forms and poetic contents that emerge when catastrophic events show flashes of sublime beauty. Aware of the ethical challenges that involve poetizing about that “deadly beauty” after one of the most destructive catastrophes in her country’s recent history, Adorno offers vanishing lines that pose the possibility of a post-disaster poetry.