November 3, 2010 - MUSAC, Museo de Arte Contemporaneo de Castilla y Leon - The symposium “Thinking Latin America. Contemporary Cultural Constructions”
November 3, 2010

The symposium “Thinking Latin America. Contemporary Cultural Constructions”

Carlos Garaicoa, “De cómo la tierra se quiere parecer al cielo (II),” (detail) 2005.

Symposium
Thinking Latin America: Contemporary Cultural Constructions

November 6th and 7th, MUSAC auditorium

Schedule of Symposium at:
www.musac.es

Museo de Arte Contemporáneo de Castilla y León (MUSAC)
Avenida de los Reyes Leoneses, 24
24008 León, Spain

Directors:
Agustín Pérez Rubio, María Inés Rodríguez, Octavio Zaya

Thinking Latin America is intended as a platform for critical and dynamic reflection about a continent undergoing continual mutation, facing vast economic, political and social challenges, striving to play a central role in the processes of transformation and development of our century, and open to relations and cultural exchanges with the rest of the world. The symposium, directed by Agustín Pérez Rubio, María Inés Rodríguez and Octavio Zaya, will be held on November 6th and 7th, as part of MUSAC’s 5th Anniversary programme devoted to Latin America. The directors have structured the meetings around four panel discussions that will address four topics:
• Self-management and transmission of knowledge: other school models
• The museum as platform for reflection and thought
• Artists’ collectives and residencies: spaces for production, dissemination and exchange
• Private initiatives that engender social change.

As a whole, through the plural and diverse voices from different contexts, these encounters will not only give us an opportunity to update our information about the Latin American continent and our perspectives of it, but they will also allow us to create and strengthen networks for future work and collaboration.

To generate dialogue and critical exchange about Latin American cultural constructions, MUSAC has invited: Sofía Olascoaga, Educational Curator and visual artist (New York, USA); Eduardo Abaroa, artist, Educational Coordinator of SOMA (Mexico); Michelle Marxuach, Co-Director of the school BETA LOCAL (San Juan, Puerto Rico); Ursula Davila Villa, Associate Curator of the Blanton Museum of Art at The University of Texas at Austin (USA); Sofía Hernández Chong, Director of Museo Tamayo (Mexico), Jaime Cerón; art critic and independent Curator (Colombia); Lucía González, Director of Museo de Antioquia (Medellin, Colombia); Catalina Lozano, Director of the GASWORKS residencies project (UK), Mónica Restrepo, Lugar a Dudas artist (Colombia); Daniela Castro, curator, CAPACETE residencies (Brazil); Ana María Millán, artist, co-founder of Helena Producciones (Colombia); Gabriel Pérez Barreiro, Director of Cisneros Foundation (New York and Venezuela); Justo Werlang, Co-founder of Mercosul Biennial (Brazil); Juan Manuel Echavarría, artist (Colombia), Claudia Fernández, artist, Meteoro project / Escuelas de oficios (Mexico City).

1. TRANSMISSION OF KNOWLEDGE: Other School Models

In recent years it has become necessary to generate new spaces for thought that may bring about platforms for reflection to analyze different possibilities for knowledge transmission. We will present different educational and production programmes, conceived by artists in Puerto Rico, Argentina, Colombia and Mexico, which have become important alternatives for supporting pedagogic and critical discussion projects that articulate other cultural constructs. We address these new school proposals in addition to the importance of questioning the traditional educational model.

Moderator: ESTRELLA DE DIEGO. Participants: SOFÍA OLASCOAGA; EDUARDO ABAROA; MICHELLE MARXUACH

2. THE MUSEUM AS PLATFORM FOR REFLECTION AND THOUGHT

This panel discussion will explore the relationship that museums have with their surrounding communities in the development of Latin American cultural, social and artistic fabrics. The guests will also address the current influence and development that collections, exhibitions and educational activities generate in contemporary society. The museum’s function as a platform for thought and ideal space for developing new perspectives in educational systems will also be assessed.

Moderator: AGUSTIN PÉREZ RUBIO. Participants: URSULA DAVILA-VILLA; SOFÍA HERNÁNDEZ CHONG; JAIME CERÓN; LUCÍA GONZÁLEZ

3. ARTISTS’ COLLECTIVES AND RESIDENCIES: Spaces for Production, Dissemination and Exchange

In a cultural context that is increasingly dominated by the so-called social networks that foster the prominence of subjectivity, the watered-down culture of cut and paste, and the continual devaluation of knowledge, the proliferation of social and cultural collectives affords rare and engaging alternatives that are contributing to slowing down “the growth of insignificance”. Whether they originate from artistic and curatorial circumstances or emerge as a consequence of institutional or educational needs and deficiencies, these collectives are multiplying around the globe to suggest another way of making culture. Those we bring together here all belong to the Triangle Art Trust network. They are from Latin America and they have been created and organized around artists’ groups that, through workshops, artist residencies, exhibitions and other parallel and multidisciplinary activities, foster and stimulate outreach, production processes, experimentation, mobility and international relations from their local points of origin, collectively exploring new ideas and always extending the limits of their often non-linear and anti-hierarchal practices.

Moderator: OCTAVIO ZAYA Participants: CATALINA LOZANO; MÓNICA RESTREPO; DANIELA CASTRO; ANA MARIA MILLÁN

4. PRIVATE INITIATIVES THAT ENGENDER SOCIAL CHANGE

The panel will analyze some projects whose main perspective is that of creating a bridge between art and society. These proposals have been developed by private foundations (on a pedagogic level or in support of new production spaces) or by artists (community education projects, spaces for dialogue and shared experience in contexts of war). The reflection that emerges from them leads us to question the repercussion of the work of art and the artist’s role in contemporary society. These new forms of perception and positioning with regard to a specific context raise questions about the articulation of art in the field of politics.

Moderator: MARÍA INÉS RODRÍGUEZ. Participants: GABRIEL PÉREZ BARREIRO; JUSTO WERLANG; JUAN MANUEL ECHAVARRÍA; CLAUDIA FERNÁNDEZ

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