Ik Lab
Tulum, Quintana Roo, Mexico | View Map
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Research Facilities
© Enchanting Transformation 2018


Ik Lab as Architects


AZULIK is delighted to announce the opening of AZULIK Uh May, an experiential site to support research, transformation and creation in Tulum, Mexico. The opening ceremony for AZULIK Uh May on November 30 brought together a community of prestigious international and local leaders from a diverse range of fields to share, develop and implement ideas to reconnect people of ancient and modern communities while opening paths for human evolution.

Roth (Eduardo Neira), founder of AZULIK and the foundation Enchanting Transformation, shared his vision and plans for the evolution of AZULIK Uh May: “ At the heart of AZULIK Uh May, a school focusing on the universal language of art and craft will bring together the local Mayan population, artists in residence, international students and scholars. Through a shared experience of creativity, the school will foster and develop the sense of belonging in a community. ”

Antonio Abuelo Oxte of the Mayan community, César Tangoa of the Shipibo community and Camila Argel Cayun of the Mapuche community each spoke about the journeys and challenges of their respective tribes. They were joined by Diego Favarolo , CEO of Space Al, who stressed the importance of connectivity for the development of an economy of collaboration; as well as by the founders of Studio Drift, Ralph Nauta and Lonneke Gordijn , who discussed design and sustainability. Ernesto Neto evoked the profound connection between man and nature; while Mikolaj Sekutowicz , partner and vice-president of Therme Group, and architect Frida Escobedo explored the possibilities and developments in conscious architecture. Oskar Metsavaht shared the experience of his encounter with the Ashaninka tribe in the Amazon; and social-entrepreneur Sophia Swire commented on her experience in the field of arts and crafts.

During the opening ceremony, Claudia Paetzold , curator and artistic director of IK LAB, commented on the transformative role of art: “ Art is the expression of the fundamental human desire to find meaning. At IK LAB, we explore new ways of experiencing and creating art, mindful of the visceral connection with nature and the interrelatedness of human pathways .”

The opening night also featured a moon ritual fashion show to present Anikena’s SS19 demi-couture collection across a runway suspended over water. AZULIK’s sustainable in-house fashion brand celebrates the principle of the divine feminine with unique pieces drawing inspiration from the ancient Mayan tribal culture and indigenous oral traditions.

On December 1, a series of implementation labs, co-led by participants of the opening ceremony, focused on a diverse range of themes such as Art and Architecture: Codes of Transformation; Sustainability in Fashion: The Inspiration of Awareness; Art and Technology: Towards an Evolutionary Space; and Arts and Crafts: Processes of Creation. The evening marked the inauguration of IK LAB’s second exhibition space: IK LAB Uh May.

“ After the exploration of invisible spatial coordinates as a gateway into the metaphysical realm in Alignments , followed by a shift to the emanation of earthly creations in Configurations , IK LAB’s third exhibition, Conjunctions , reveals the interrelatedness of human pathways while marking the inauguration of a second exhibition space: IK LAB Uh May, a 16-meter-high concrete and bejuco dome with a cupola crowned by the Flower of Life. The exhibition features works by Oskar Metsavaht, Paulo Nazareth and Ernesto Neto, which highlight the crossroads of the human journey.” (Claudia Paetzold) Installation

Oskar Metsavaht’s immersive video projection Interfaces II - Man//Cosmos//Forest retraces his inner journey during a ceremony with the Ashaninka tribe. An intricate choreography of geometrical signs is superimposed onto footage from the Amazon rainforest, operating as a passageway between perception and vision. Witnesses to the fundamental union of man and nature, visitors are invited to reconnect with their innermost selves.

Paulo Nazareth’s oeuvre unfolds into an intricate network of manifold connections. In Conjunctions , he explores the link between humans and the elements - earth, water and sky. The performances documented through video and photography stage him as forming part of nature and a foreign body at once, illustrating his quest to reinvest the human presence with a fundamental significance. The interactive installation Sem Titulo: [Rede de Pescador], consisting of three colorful hammocks under a canopy of salt bags, places us beneath an imaginary sea, thus reversing our viewpoint while at the same time pointing to the cycle of life through the continuous movement of water from sea to sky.

Ernesto Neto’s oeuvre explores the elemental structures of the natural and social realms, creating an immersive experience prone to redefining the boundaries between the viewer and the work, the individual and the community, as well as the material and immaterial spheres. Reaching 7 meters high, Every Tree is a Civilizing Entity embraces the visitor in an intricate canopy of delicately woven cotton crochet reaching into the crowns of the trees dwelling inside the exhibition space. On the other side of the dome, the cathedral-like structure of Healing House offers a space for recollection and meditation. The drop shaped sculptures Pray Light and Leaves Life redefine the spaces from which they emanate, whereas Life Blows Life , an ever-growing cellular network, is reminiscent of an invisible thread sustaining and guiding the meanderings of human existence.

Conjunctions is presented at IK LAB Uh May until April 2019, while Configurations is on view at IK LAB Tulum until February 2019. Both spaces will offer a program of workshops, residencies and talks.

Roth announced that throughout 2019, AZULIK Uh May will continue to develop a program to support its current facilities, progressively establishing workshops for the arts and crafts school and evolving and expanding to include a fashion lab, a recording studio, a recycling and sustainability research center and a hub for new technologies. In addition, AZULIK Uh May will encompass medical facilities that integrate Western medicine and millennia-old Mayan healing practices, as well as a research kitchen and restaurant that will explore, preserve and honor the healing virtues of ancestral Mayan culinary wisdom.

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