How to whistle with wild clay?
An experimental clay workshop on making ceramic instruments hosted by Nomadic Kiln Group (NKG), Carlos Gutiérrez and Tatianwa López from Bolivia on Vartiosaari island 14-16th of June 2024. 
Invitation to workshop
We invite you to Vartiosaari to engage with elemental forces (water, earth, fire, air) guided by clays, ceramics and sounds. After crossing the sea to reach the island, Tati and Carlos will teach us how to craft Wuacus, Silbatos (simple whistles) and Silbatos de la Muerte (death whistles) from wild clay foraged from different natural locations around Helsinki. We will fire the instruments in a brick kiln built for the workshop by Art School Maa students and experiment with a Portable Raku Backpack. During the firing Carlos will introduce whistling/breathing techniques and listening exercises which will lead us towards different ways of interlocking the sounds using simple instruments and elements. The culmination of all these energies will be a night walk around the island, where we will listen, play and perform for one another.
No prior ceramic or musical skills are required. The workshop is for everyone who wants to experiment with wild clays, sounds, extreme temperatures of the kilns and to engage in self organising collective processes. The workshop is limited to 15 participants and is organised on three consecutive days. Participation fee for clay work on Friday is 30€, Saturday & Sunday programs are public and donation based. We ask you to bring our own food and wood or coal for the firing. You can also bring ceramic items you have made before for the raku experiments or unfinished clay objects you would like to fire in the brick kiln. Glazings are welcomed too if you are raku-curious. We can help you source wild clays before the workshop if requested. Get in touch with Eero (details below).
FRIDAY 14.06.
15:00 - 20:00 — Day of modelling Wuacus, Silbatos and Silbatos de la Muerte with Carlos Gutiérrez and Tatiana López at the Artist House. The fee for Friday’s program is 30€. This event is fully booked.

10:00 - 19:00 — Day of kiln firings and sonic experimentation. This event is open to the public so you are welcomed to join us even if you have not participated on Friday.

10:00 - 11:00 — Arrival with coffee/tea
12:00 - 19:00 — The wood fired kiln and gas fired raku will be heated. If you have clay items you want to fire, please bring them with you. The raku-kiln can be used for glazing and other treatments. Both processes are experimental and we cannot guarantee that items will remain intact (but we will try our best).
16:00 - 19:00 (exact time tbc) — Sonic experimentation with Carlos as the firings are on. 

SUNDAY 16.6. 
18:00 - 21:30 — Day of sonic walk with Carlos. On this participatory day we will play the whistles we have prepared on Friday and Saturday. If everything works out well with the raku-kiln, we can continue experimenting and glazing objects.

18:00 - 19:00 — Arrival, Opening of the kiln
19:00 - 21:30 — Sonic walk
21:30 - 22:00 — possibility to leave the island by the rowing boat to the mainland. 
21-30 — ….aftermath celebration of the workshop / (Monika’s birthday) 

Location: Vartiosaari Artist House across the shore from Reposalmentie 1

We have three boats for transport and the Sunferry will also transport people during the workshop. See for ferry schedules (2,5€ per trip). 

We will be outdoors or in rustic settings. Dress warmly and prepare for rain
You are invited to bring your favourite clay modelling tools, unfinished clay things and glazings if you intend on experimenting with a raku. You are also welcomed to bring firewood or coal, or wooden stuff to burn to fire the kiln (this is not expected)
There are mosquitoes on the island, please be prepared. If you have the wearable mosquito net, it could be a protection and nice costume element for sonic walk on Sunday.  
Please bring your own food, there is a possibility to barbecue. Vartiosaari Island Artist House has a fridge for storing food and snacks. We will provide water, coffee, and tea
The island has a compost toilet, not wheelchair accessible, access to kitchen and water
The fee for Friday’s program is 30€. We welcome donations on the public program on Saturday and Sunday. 
Documentation of the workshop will be made during the event.
If you have questions regarding the Vartiosaari Artist House contact Monika Czyżyk czyzyk.monika //at / zero44962two58five. For workshop technicalities and if you need wild clay, contact Eero Yli-Vakkuri eero //at / zero50572nine74three
On the workshop hosts
Carlos Gutiérrez Quiroga is a composer, performer, archivist and researcher based in La Paz, Bolivia. His musical work is influenced by the indigenous music of the Bolivian Highlands and has been extended to the creation of instruments, sound objects, public interventions and installations in which he explores Andean tuning systems, spatialization of sound over very long distances, aural illusions, decentralised structures and connections between composition and archival research, orality and experimental writing. As a performer, he plays various aerophones from the Andean region both with traditional and extended techniques applied to experimentation and improvisation. Gutiérrez uses media archaeology to uncover power dynamics in information creation across different technological times. Old media artefacts connect the past and present, influencing collective memory. Gutiérrez also questions human-centred views of borders, highlighting connections between humans, animals, machines, and the environment toward interconnected worldviews.
Tatiana Vanessa López Churata, de La Paz, Bolivia, is a multidisciplinary artist and researcher dedicated to sound experimentation, visual arts, ceramics and design. She is a board member, teacher and performer of the Orquesta Experimental de Instrumentos Nativos (OEIN), a project dedicated to the study of indigenous music of the Andean highlands and creation of contemporary experimental music. The artistic/social proposal of the OEIN has strong links with the reflection on the colonial condition of Latin American academic music and the generation of new pedagogies influenced by non-Western knowledges. She has exhibited works at the DAAD Gallery, in Berlin, in collaboration with composer Carlos Gutiérrez. Her artistic work is especially influenced by the various forms of indigenous expression in Bolivia
Nomadic Kiln Group (NKG) stems from Helsinki and comprises Monika Czyżyk, Elina Vainio and Eero Yli-Vakkuri. The collective was set up in 2021, founded on a common interest in getting in touch with the soil, water, and extreme temperatures. A central part of their work is collectivity: they have held workshops where participants work with local wild clay and build kilns. Their artistic background is in the moving image, installation, sculpture, and performance.
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