Commend See 003

Melanie Velarde (sound)
Christin Ripley (object)

Cerberus spirit of the temporal, Melanie Velarde forages and fertilizes the fragility of human experience. With one foot on earth and the other on its satellite of memory, Velarde brings an affable anachronism to her work where other archivists agitate authority.

Velarde’s process, both panoramic and microscopic, embraces the methodology of record-keeping, but permits all documentation to disintegrate. She listens to our world kindly, chronicling awesome and unforgivable terrains, abandoned emblems of progress, and chance encounters as stories we remember, but have not yet lived.

Tomes evoked and bespoke, Velarde pairs field recordings from her immediate and traveled surroundings with found (or lost?) musical objects, layering the two into improvisatory analog music under the moniker TEMPORARYARCHIVES. For the third exchange in the Commend See series, Velarde fashions ten anthropological sensory excursions as Parcel, the aural component to Christin Ripley’s metaphysical marble dye practice.

Parcel enlightens like a sun shower over a dry, yellow terrain. Softly but abruptly, Velarde’s motions lull trepidation into tenderness, revealing a loop’s essence as an archeologist would sweep dust from a fragile find – quickly, almost unnoticed, before disappearing with the wind. Sometimes the uncrumpled memories remain coarse, and sometimes they glow pristine in rebirth.

Velarde invokes the lonely spaces where transcendent collections of objects sit in wait. From within and outside of this spiritual storage space, Velarde animates the infinite clutter through intense momentary interactions with her surroundings. This parcel, another from Velarde’s intimate archive, remains at risk of being swallowed back into an immense time and space, but finds physicality for this loving moment.

An artist edition of twelve unique LPs featuring marble dyed, silkscreened sleeves by Ripley will be available at Commend, alongside a cassette edition of Parcel. An exhibition celebrating the collaboration and exhibiting new pieces by Ripley and projections and performance by Velarde took place on Thursday, December 15, 2016.