Graphic Action Art, Revolt and Anti-Fascism
International Encounter on Graphic Turn
Mexican Embassy in Spain, Cultural Diplomacy of Mexico, the Cultural Institute of Mexico in Spain and hablarenarte
This international encounter, setting out from Graphic Turn. Like the Ivy on a Wall, a collective exhibition stemming from a long research process driven by the Southern Conceptualisms Network, brings together researchers, artists and activists as it looks to foster exchanges to examine art and political graphic action art in Latin America, as much in its recent history as a present characterised by the return of authoritarianism and the loss of civil liberties.
The encounter pools different graphic action art tools and tactics from the street — understanding graphic art in an expanded sense, or more aptly as a burst — with initiatives ranging from collective sewing to cartography. The programme comprises tables to debate themes which intensify the curatorial concepts of the show and create a transversal composition among artists, curators, researchers and activists with a view to sharing different graphic art tools and strategies of dissemination and occupying streets.
A dialogue that seeks to find not only coincidences and affinities between historical cycles and the present day, but also tensions and latencies. Graphic art — like the ivy in the chorus of the well-known song “Volver a los diecisiete” (Being Seventeen Again), by Chilean singer-songwriter Violeta Parra — grows on walls and sprouts over and over. Just like life.
Clara Albinati (Brazil) is a professor at the Pontifícia Universidade Católica in Minas Gerais, Belo Horizonte, and is a member of the Southern Conceptualisms Network. She works as a researcher and independent film-maker.
Sebastián Alonso Bessonart (Uruguay) is a professor at the University of the Republic, in Montevideo, Uruguay. Focusing on contemporary artistic and curatorial practices, he coordinates the CasaMario Project and has participated in numerous biennials and international exhibitions.
Carolina Barrero (Cuba) is an art historian, curator and activist. She has worked in different institutions and art galleries and has promoted actions of civic and peaceful resistance linked to the 27N group and San Isidro Movement.
Edén Bastida (Mexico) is a visual artist who holds a PhD in Art Theory and History from the University of Buenos Aires, with his research on underground Zapatista film-making noteworthy.
Gonzalo Castro-Colimil (Chile) is an artist and cultural agitator. He founded the Coordinator of Artistic Operations (COA) and is director of the ËFA Txawün residency and circuit of territorial experience.
Javier del Olmo (Argentina) is an architect and multidisciplinary artist. He is a co-founding member of the art-action collectives XI Ventanas (1996–2003), Mínimo9 (2000–2003), Arde! (2001–2012) and Artistas Solidarios (2013–2018).
David Feldman (USA) is a film-maker, editor and photographer. His works most notably include the documentary Los Olvidados. The Forgotten (2014) on the installation of Jay Lynn Gómez’s mural paying homage to migrants who have died attempting to cross the Mexican-US border.
Hugo Giménez (Paraguay) is a film-maker. He was awarded the IV DOCTV Latinoamérica Prize for Fuera de campo, and his film Matar a un muerto (Killing the Dead) was Paraguay’s nomination for the Goya Awards and Oscars in 2021, the same year he was also nominated for best Ibero-American fictional debut feature in the Platino Awards.
Sol Henaro (Mexico) is a researcher and curator. Her specialist field is the critical historiography of artistic practices from 1980 to the present day. Since 2010, she has been part of the Southern Conceptualisms Network and since 2015 she has curated Acervo Documental and overseen the Arkheia Documentation Centre at the Museo Universitario Arte Contemporáneo (MUAC) in Mexico.
Carlos Henríquez Consalvi (Venezuela) is the director of Museo de la Palabra y la Imagen, in El Salvador. He is also the founder of Radio Venceremo and has curated exhibitions on historical memory, culture and identity. He was awarded the International Prince Claus Award for Culture and Development.
Cristina Híjar (Mexico) is a professor in the fields of communication and politics and a visual arts researcher. She is part of the work group Art and Politics from the Latin American Council of Social Sciences (CLACSO) and the Híjar Collective, which focuses on aesthetic-political actions for historical memory.
Natalia Iguiñiz Boggio (Peru) is a visual artist, university lecturer, feminist activist and mum. Her work explores the construction of discourses around conceptions of women, sexuality, domestic work and maternity, as well as historical memory and the coloniality of power.
Ana Longoni (Argentina) is a writer and researcher at Argentina’s National Scientific and Technical Research Council (CONICET), where she explores the crossroads between art and politics in Latin America. She has also propelled the Southern Conceptualisms Network since it was founded, and from 2018 to 2021 she was director of the Museo Reina Sofía’s Public Activities Department.
Jay Lynn Gómez (USA) is an artist. Her work focuses on giving a voice to the migrant community in California and revealing their working conditions. Her work has been exhibited at institutions that include the National Portrait Gallery of the Smithsonian Institution (Washington D.C.) and the Museum of Latin American Art (MOLAA, Long Beach, California).
André Mesquita (Brazil) is a researcher who holds a PhD in Social History. He investigates the articulations between art, politics and activism, and is also a curator at the Museu de Arte de São Paulo Assis Chateaubriand (MASP) and a member of the Southern Conceptualisms Network.
Fernando Miranda (Uruguay) is a professor and researcher at the University of the Republic, in Montevideo, Uruguay. He currently coordinates the Research Nucleus of Visual Culture, Education and Identity Construction in the Fine Arts Institute at the same university.
Guillermina Mongan (Argentina) is an art historian, teacher, researcher, curator and artist. She is a member of the Southern Conceptualisms Network, the collective Frente Sudaka, Serigrafistas Queer— where she also coordinates its ASK archive — and Cromoactivismo.
Alberto Nanclares (Spain) is a visual artist, urban activist, architect and DJ. He was among those driving forward the Graphic Liberation of Madrid Movement and, since 2001, has been a founding member of the Basurama collective.
Yanelys Núñez Leyva (Cuba) is a curator and feminist activist. She is a member of the San Isidro Movement and co-founder of the Museo de la Disidencia en Cuba (MDC) cultural platform.
Elva Peniche Monfort (Mexico) is a researcher, teacher, curator and archive manager. Her interests encompass the crossroads between archive, photography and Latin American artistic practices in the second half of the twentieth century.
Juan Pablo Pérez (Argentina) is a teacher, artist and curator. He coordinates the Department of Visual Ideas from the “Floreal Gorini” Cultural Centre of Cooperation, is part of the Southern Conceptualisms Network and participated in the archive-show Resistencias Tipográficas.
Suset Sánchez Sánchez (Cuba) is a curator, art critic and researcher. She has been a research fellow in the Museo Reina Sofía’s Exhibitions Department and Spain’s Royal Academy in Rome, as well as curating the Intermediæ programme of activities in Matadero Madrid.
Mariela Scafati (Argentina) is an artist. Her work experiments with Geometric Abstraction, modern design, performance and alternative media. She is a member of Serigrafistas Queer and Cromoactivismo, and her shows most notably include ¡Teléfono! En diálogo con Lidy Prati (Centro Cultural Borges, 2009) and Handcuff Secrets (Floating Island stand at Art Basel Miami, 2017).
Sylvia Suárez (Colombia) is a professor in the Visual Arts Department at the Pontificia Universidad Javeriana, Bogotá, and a curator and art historian. She is a member of the Taller Historia Crítica del Arte (Critical History of Art Workshop) research group and the Southern Conceptualisms Network.
Mabel Tapia (Argentina) is deputy artistic director of Museo Reina Sofía.
Todo por la praxis is an artistic collective made up of visual artist, researcher and educator Jo Muñoz (Chile) and architect and artist Diego Peris López (Spain). Its concerns spotlight dissidences as political forms of resistance which are able to build other possible imaginaries.
César Valencia (Chile) is a visual artist. He was previously a member of the Piñen collective, Illicit Association (2010–2018) and develops the Medicinal and Emotional Graphic Production graphic archive.
Paulina E. Varas (Chile) is an academic and associate researcher at the Andrés Bello University in Santiago de Chile. She is currently developing the project Art, Politics and Women from Chile, a genealogy of/for/with the social and subjective body, with support from the Chilean National Agency of Research and Development.
Hugo Vidal (Argentina) is a visual artist. His works centred on political art and activism have been included in projects such as the 8th Meeting of European and Latin American Museums. Retracing Networks (Museo Reina Sofía and ARCOmadrid, 2019) and the archive-show Resistencias Tipográficas (“Floreal Gorini” Cultural Centre of Cooperation 2015).
Wednesday, 18 May 2022
—Conducted by Ana Longoni and Mabel Tapia, with a video intervention by the La Voz de la Mujer Graphic Art Collective
11am – 2pm Untimely Memories
Speaking of memories inside the framework of graphic art practice points to a genealogy of the relationship between art and politics, comprising graphic action art hailing from divergent eras and places. The untimely can be understood as that which bursts forth in time to subvert the order of life, and certain graphic actions can be taken as signs of an inverted or dislocated temporality. In an untimely fashion, they strike up a dialogue between experiences and knowledge, creating new relationships and meanings between the present, past echoes and impulses towards the future.
Coordinated by: Sol Henaro
Participants: Sebastián Alonso Bessonart, Hugo Giménez, Cristina Híjar, Fernando Miranda, Alberto Nanclares and Juan Pablo Pérez
4:30pm - 6:30pm Graphic Action Art: From Revolution to Repression
Intellectuals’ relationships with politics and their active participation in collective processes to transform social reality through revolutionary channels have historically led to a field of tensions: from enthusiasm, solidarity and militant commitment to subsequent disillusion before the persecution and repression of critical thought by the State and the exercise of political violence on bodies, all of which is reflected in symbolic production. These are cyclical disputes in Latin American history that have occurred since the Cuban Revolution. This round-table discussion ignites dialogue between the oscillating and complex place of graphic action art in Cuba and Nicaragua.
Coordinated by: Suset Sánchez Sánchez
Participants: Carolina Barrero and Yanelys Núñez Leyva
6:30 - 8:30pm Neither True Nor False
Performance and Conversation
Since 2013, Argentinian artist and activist Mariela Scafati has been performing Neither True Nor False, putting forward an exercise of memory which revisits the past twenty years of her committed practice in serigraph activism, in which she has driven collective initiatives such as the Taller Popular de Serigrafía and Serigrafistas Queer. After the performance, Scafati will discuss this journey (and the poetic operations invoking it) with artist and curator Guillermina Mongan, who has supported and written about the action.
Participants: Guillermina Mongan and Mariela Scafati
Thursday, 19 May 2022
11am – 2pm Graphic Bodies: Stencils for Street Choreography
Street-based graphic art practices cannot be considered externally from the bodies printing and bearing them. There is little more fragile than a card stencil that will be used repeatedly to paint a wall, surface, T-shirt or skin as a support to multiply its image. Graphic bodies trace their polyphonic and talking chorography in the streets.
Coordinated by: Sylvia Suárez
Participants: Clara Albinati, Gonzalo Castro-Colimil, Elva Peniche Monfort and Paulina E. Varas
4pm – 6:30pm Border-crossings: Collective Practices and Reinventing the Political
The notion of cross-border graphic art refers to the knowledge and bodies of resistance that cross borders (geopolitical frontiers and borders between knowledge) with the disobedience of successive steps and the power of collective walking, weaving alliances, tackling precariousness in life and tacking disobedient memories under an open sky.
Coordinated by: André Mesquita
Participants: Carlos Henríquez Consalvi, Todo por la praxis collective, Javier del Olmo and César Valencia
7pm – 9pm Anti-fascist Graphic Activism in the Present
This forum of assembly seeks dialogue between different contemporary experiences of anti-fascist and anti-patriarchal graphic art and art-making (visual and performance) in public spaces that face an increasingly more excluding and violent order. Via short interventions by six activist artists from different contexts, a space is created to share experiences between researchers, artists and activists participating in the collective project Graphic Turn — and between different local and Latin American collectives and activists — to imagine modes of sharing knowledge and weaving collaboration networks.
Coordinated by: Ana Longoni
Participants: Eden Bastida, David Feldman, Natalia Iguiñiz Boggio, Jay Lynn Gómez and Hugo Vidal