Three artists will lead visitors along the Rio Grande Friday, March 26, starting at 4 p.m. in a discussion about There Must Be Other Names For The River, a web-based sound installation and virtual community space engaging the history, present, and potential futures of the Rio Grande. In the installation, viewers are guided along the river where they hear the songs of vocalists emerge from points along its 1,800-mile length.

Artists Marisa Demarco, Dylan McLaughlin, and Jessica Zeglin will be joined by Arif Khan, director of The University of New Mexico Art Museum, and Traci Quinn, former curator of Education & Public Programs, to discuss the development, goals and artistic process of There Must Be Other Names For The River. The virtual conversation, held on Zoom, is free and open to all. Registration is required here.

There Must Be Other Names For The River utilizes digital technology to artistically explore our relationship with the source of life in this region. In this time of physical distancing, There Must Be Other Names for the River reminds viewers that the river we call the Rio Grande connects us to neighbors and ecosystems, both seen and unseen.

Each singer works from a graphic score representing nearly 50 years of waterflow data at a specific point along the river. This exhibition is paired with a virtual community space that invites the community that relies on the river to submit their own vocalization of waterflow data, stories, songs, or retellings of memories and hopes for the future, stemming from their relationships with what we call today the Rio Grande. These paired digital spaces ask us to actively consider and contribute to the trajectory of this lifeline in arid lands.

About the artists
Marisa Demarco is a musician, performance and installation artist, composer, and journalist based in Albuquerque. She is a longtime news reporter and producer for public radio, spending much of her career focused on criminal legal reform and public health. Demarco is also a Master of Fine Arts candidate at UNM’s Experimental Art + Technology Program.

Dylan McLaughlin is a sound and video artist, storyteller, and educator currently living and working in Albuquerque. McLaughlin is born of the Diné people. He received his Bachelor of Fine Arts in New Media Art from the Institute of American Indian Arts and is currently completing his Master of Fine Arts in Art and Ecology at UNM.

Jessica Zeglin is an artist, gardener, and educator currently based in the middle Rio Grande valley. She holds a Master of Fine Arts in Art and Ecology from UNM, a Master of Public Health from the University of Minnesota, and is the recipient of the PLAYA and Tallgrass Artist Residencies, as well as a Sevilleta Long Term Ecological Research program fellowship.

Generous support for this project is provided by The University of New Mexico Center for Environmental Arts and Humanities.