DANIELLA VALZ GEN
Poet / Artist / Card reader
Daniella Valz Gen is a poet, artist, and card reader. Their work explores the interstices between languages, cultures, and value systems with an emphasis on embodiment and ritual, through the mediums of performance, installation, conversation, and text.
Valz Gen is the author of the poetry collection Subversive Economies (PSS 2018). Their prose has been published in various art and literary journals such as Lish, SALT. Magazine, Paperwork Magazine, and The Happy Hypocrite amongst others. They’re currently developing the next stage of their project (be)longing, a series of immersive elemental rituals.
Valz Gen has been focusing the last two years on integrating their oracular practice with their art and poetry. They run monthly gatherings exploring poetics in relation to the symbolism of Tarot cards within the container of Sacred Song Tarot.
On craft as oracular practice focuses on The Magician’s tools –a representation of elemental forces– in relation to the act of creation.
In this talk, Daniella Valz Gen shares the ontologies that foreground their interdisciplinary practice through an exploration of poetics, divination, and somatics. Focusing on a process-led approach that challenges the split between mind and body, the work proposes ritual as a way to sensitise the self and others to subtler forms of being present with each other, with our environments, and the other than human.
Throughout the talk, the artist will share a series of works that stem from elemental ritual practice, including their project (Be)longing, which is in the exhibition.
Daniella Valz Gen (2019 – ongoing) (Be)longing [Land interventions documented through 35mm slide film]
(Be)longing is an embodied exploration of communion with the land through the process of embedding a body in the landscape. The work stems from ecological concerns that expand to urgent socio-political issues, and proposes reflections on the questions of: Where does the migrant body belong? What does it mean to belong to more than one place? How do we forge our relationship to the land we occupy? And how do we forge belonging as an internal experience at every moment?
At the heart of the project exist three landscape interventions which took place at various locations across the UK in the Summer and Autumn of 2019 in locations outside of London (Postling; Kent, Fermyn Woods; Northamptonshire & The Warren; Kent) -generating decentralised and urgent discussions surrounding migration. The first iteration of (Be)longing was funded by Arts Council England and produced by performance s p a c e[. These performative interventions became the genesis of further installation, text, and performance; which were exhibited at CUSTOM in Folkestone, as part of Something Held In The Mouth curated by Madeline Hodge in October 2019.
The documentation of the interventions was done through 35mm slide film by Rowan Powell.