Hello to all those reading, we’re grateful that you’re here to engage with Spin Arts and find out more about us! Over the next few months, while our shows aren’t touring, we’re going to introduce you to our team and our artists.
This Spotlight Edition shines a light on Yuvel Soria.
Who is Yuvel?
Yuvel (he/him) is a British-Bolivian
Latinx diasporic artist
Comic book enthusiast
What does Yuvel stand for?
Equality, inclusivity and recognition of the Black and global majority
Sharing and valuing all cultures and heritages
Working with mixed identity artists
Against prejudice in any form including race, cultural heritage, gender, age, sexuality and ableism
Removing barriers for people to engage with, participate in, enjoy and create art
Would you tell us about your current work?
AJAYU Transitorio is inspired by the traditional Bolivian celebration of the dead. In Bolivia, Dia de los Muertos (Day of the Dead) is a celebration of the eternal, providing one day a year for the living to be reunited with the departed. Many believe death is not separated from life so they wait for the departed to show themselves. It is said that the dead arrive at noon on November 1st and depart at noon the next day. AJAYU Transitorio explores and brings together the traditions of food as cultural practice, creating dialogues around our relationship with death, and helping us to remember our loved ones who have passed to the next life through the magic of Latin American ritual. The festivity of The Day of the Dead marks the beginning of a time of restoration, equilibrium and harmony with nature, the sowing season, the beginning of the new season. The dead and their descent to Mother Earth is the seed of new life. Death brings new life. See R&D trailer here.
As part of this work and in light of the current global pandemic, I am exploring how to use the online space and the physical space with everyday technology.
Can you tell us more about Bolivian dance and cultural heritage?
Bolivian dance is very colourful due to the diversity of its people and landscape.
It has an immense variety of traditional dance cultural practices because of its diverse indigenous groups. In Bolivia 60% of the population identify themselves as indigenous with the majority being the Quechua and Aymara descendants who were part of the Inca Empire. The Spanish colonized most of the continent in the 16th century. They suppressed many indigenous traditions and introduced christianity thus othering indigenous people and their traditions.
Bolivian people are very proud of their traditional dance and rituals, family values, and wide variety of food and produce. We gather to celebrate life, death and everything in between with food and music.
What have you learnt as an artist and what advice would you pass on to those entering the industry?
We are learning constantly and whatever we create will not be the best the first time, it needs patience, dedication and commitment to grow and flourish.
There isn’t always a straight line – there are many different ways to get to where you want to go.
How has lockdown and the past few months been for you?
As for many people it was challenging with ups and downs.
Positive: a lot of time to slow down and appreciate little things: like having the time to enjoy a morning coffee without the rush or need to be somewhere. Not so positive experiencing a creative block. Started overcoming it now thanks to friends and fellow creatives and being physically back in the studio.
Do you have a daily practice or wellbeing routine?
I do practice and dedicate time to myself every day mostly at the same time (soon after waking up). I don’t do the same things all the time, it varies depending on what I feel needs work or fancy exploring. At the moment I am exploring ways to approach training and movement, in particular looking into healthy aging and life-long learning based on research and a dialogue between art and physical performance.
What do you enjoy doing outside of work?
Cooking, going to the cinema (when we could!) reading about and watching videos about new technology and gadgets, taking a moment to smell the coffee and ponder the big questions in life.
What’s one thing most people don’t know about you?
How much I enjoy playing Candy Crush.
Thank you for reading. Stay tuned for our Spotlight Edition 5 coming soon.