Tuesday, September 8, 2009

What is it? = Coalesce Thoughts

A three-week trip into poor neighborhoods in Venezuela + three months of scholarly work + ten minute powerpoint presentation about the work I underwent throughout whole summer + a one-week art show with six other artist’s = My summer.
A coalescing series of thoughts, ideas, concepts that through the summer I investigated took control of my day-to-day routine, until I created the pieces exemplified in the accompanying images. Basically my summer dealt with exploring the scarcity of housing in Venezuela, dealing primarily with a strong interest on “invasions,” the most simplified and precarious forms of housing. Invasions (or invasiones in Spanish) are a form of improvised housing constructed on abandoned lands. The invader (invasor) seeks to stay in the land for two months, which is the time the government requires to prove the land has been truly abandoned, in order to demand ownership of the land to local authorities. The first days the house might be made out of cardboard, after a couple of days it may progress into a simple wooden/zinc construction, and as time passes the invader tries to improve the risky conditions they live in.
The two sculptures I made represent these two concepts of ownership (or lack of) and progression. On the one hand trying deal mostly with the human interactions within a space, and the other with just the physical/aesthetical aspects of the constructions I visited. The invader is in a strange "limbo-like" stage for the two months they have to stay in the land: it is not theirs, but they sleep, eat, defecate, live there; if asked to move, they might fight, but before the two month process odds are against them; hence the wheels on "Untitled" (or "Sin Titulo"). As they stablish their housings the construction starts to change and the improvable becomes permanent. The surroundings start to grow and similarly to as how they were the first ones to enter, there will be more to come, and the migrant becomes a resident. Allways a progression, never ending, just with changing variables every once in a while. A progression of materials, of time, of quantity, of history. A progression overall.
“Untitled”, or El Rancho en Ruedas (The Shanty on Wheels), how it has been nicknamed by family and friends, will be traveling around town the next couple of weeks. First will be the Newark area, to finish parking (invading?) on a the Recitation Hall Gallery Space in the University of Delaware, and be part of an art show, "I Know What Your Did Last Summer."
video

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