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ICA San Diego

Position Vector Salton Sea (Process)


Position Vector Salton Sea is a permanent site-specific art installation to be completed in partnership with the Torres Martinez Cahuilla Desert Indian tribal community. Straddling California’s Coachella and Imperial Valleys, the project measures the rapid disappearance of the Salton Sea on Torres Martinez tribal lands and leverages creative resources within the community in response to this emergent socioecological catastrophe.

Position Vector Salton Sea (Process) provides an overview of the project’s creative development to date and highlights work from an arts internship program co-led by Baumann and the Torres Martinez Desert Cahuilla Indian tribal government over Summer 2021. This program brought together nearly 40 young adults from the tribal community and invited them  into a sustained, creative engagement with the Salton Sea: a vast, inaccessible and highly politicized body of water that has served as the backdrop to their lives in the California desert. The resulting body of work - expressed in ceramics, video and drawing - emphasize this process of self-exploration and foreground the Sea both as visual spectacle and source of physical alienation.

Photographs by Philipp Scholz Rittermann & Hans Baumann