21 October 2011

Welcome to Colonia Libertad


Because thoughtful installation art makes the world so much less of a snore. And because Tijuana is the world's largest piece of installation art in itself, especially La Liber. I'm giving this guy $20. You should, too. Or more if you can. The deadline's Nov. 1. Suerte, Omar.

Per the project's page on unitedstatesartists.org:

Welcome to Colonia Libertad is a public art piece that intends to foster a dialog between art, history, writing and community concetpualization. it speaks in various directions from a specific place: Colonia Libertad. Parting from an historical document: Bartoldi’s sketch of the pedestal for his statue of liberty.

The Money will be used for 10 public installations and presentations of Lady Libertad.  Lady Libertad is a pyramid/agora that functions as a public space to orchestrate workshops, readings, presentations, performances and different activities that aim to create a dynamic of analysis, practice and appreciation of Colonia Libertad and it’s specific characteristics. Colonia Libertad is one of Tijuana’s oldest neighborhoods, it was highly populated in the 1930’s by repatriated Mexicans of the great depression.  Until 1994 it had been one of the most effective border-crossing areas due to its proximity to San Ysidro. Operation Gatekeeper and its eventual militarization of the border reduced it’s importance as a south to north point of departure. Today with record number of almost four hundred thousand repatriated Mexican this year alone, and the economic recession that has pushed lower income American citizens into the community the neighborhoods demographics have been highly affected and to a point, created a shift in it’s migratory patterns.

These characteristics as well as it’s geopolitical importance and others that arise from the strategic location are pretended to be discussed collectively as a community inside the structure / pyramid / agora. The art works relies in the strangeness generated by the public display of an inflatable statue of liberty rising over a pyramid. And what these two icons represent. The piece draws from a 1882 sketch of the pedestal for the statue of liberty. This sketch drawn by Frédéric Auguste Bartoldi, the artist creator of the colossal sculpture, pretended to conceptualize American democracy in close relation with the pre-Columbian cultures.

Each presentation/workshop/reading/performance will be conducted by a different specialist. The topic of the events will range from literary readings to art workshops, academic presentation on narco culture, Immigration law, public services, etc… The money will be used to transport and install the public art piece; facilitate the specialist’s needs; arrange accommodations for Lady Libertad at the 10 different public spaces within the neighborhood: permits, power source; and the workshop’s production cost. The 10 events will take place only at Colonia Libertad and the documentation of the events will eventually form a future show.  Thank you for your support.

Omar Pimienta.

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