Go Deeper Making Art in 2017: Carl(os) Roa on Andean Mountains (Montañas Andinas)

Making Art in 2017: Carl(os) Roa on Andean Mountains (Montañas Andinas)

Posted August 18th, 2017

Carl(os) Roa, practicing the ancient art of ruanamancy; Photo by Talia Mason.

Name: Carl(os) Roa

2017 Festival ShowAndean Mountains (Montañas Andinas)

Role: Writer, Performer

Past Festival showsAE$OP and Parts: A Speed-Through, both of which were produced by the Drexel Players. Shout-out to my alma-mater: Drexel University!

FringeArtsTell us about your show. 

Carl(os) Roa: I have an obsession with Google Maps, globetrotting, and geography. I spend some of my downtime exploring different cities with Google Street View, and it didn’t take me very long to discover that you could explore much of Colombia, where my family lived. And I started thinking a lot about giving tours of Colombia live via projection. But ultimately, I knew that these tours were largely limited to my own understanding of Colombian culture, having grown up here in the States. My experience was radically different from one who grew up in a place like Bogotá or Medellín. That in itself became artistically salient to me, these big questions of: How do people of a diaspora access a culture that they’ve been displaced from? Where do we go when the map is missing pieces?

FringeArtsHow have your interests in or approach to art making changed in the last year? 

Performing at SoLow Fest. Photo by Annemarie Branco.

Carl(os) Roa: I think my experience with the Headlong Performance Institute really twisted my artistic brain. I spent four months hanging out with dancers, visual artists, community organizers, and even electronic musicians – people who forced me to think in a very different way about me and my work. I’ve been eternally grateful for these interdisciplinary discoveries.

FringeArtsTell us about an instance from 2017 where your interaction with art provided some much needed solace or refuge from outside troubles.

Carl(os) Roa: Last month, I visited MoMA for the first time. Watching a video of Laurie Anderson make fun of the National Anthem, an amazing installation by Martine Syms, an artist who EVERYONE should be aware of, and the Robert Rauschenberg exhibition was critical for me. At the time, I was questioning my own art, and the limits of what I can do, only to have my fears be allayed when I saw other artists extending the parameters before my very eyes.


Andean Mountains (Montañas Andinas)
Carl(os) Roa

$15 / 60 minutes

Sept. 7th at 7pm (Preview), Sept. 8th-9th and 14th-15th at 7pm, Sept. 9th at 2pm (w/ Talkback) @ Taller Puertorriqueño, 2557 North 5th Street