July 9, 2019 - Tank Festival - Canary Islands Tank Festival 2019
e-flux Architecture
July 9, 2019
July 9, 2019

Tank Festival

Tank Festival at Espacio Cultural El Tanque, June 6, 2019. © Jesús Bilbao.

Canary Islands Tank Festival 2019
July 5–25, 2019

espacioculturaleltanque.blogspot.com
www.gobiernodecanarias.org
Facebook / Instagram

Canary Islands Tank Festival 2019
July 5–25, 2019

espacioculturaleltanque.blogspot.com
www.gobiernodecanarias.org
Facebook / Instagram

Tank Festival is an art festival that takes place the Canary Islands. The events are mostly held at El Tanque Cultural Space in Santa Cruz de Tenerife. Its origin and evolution are inextricably linked to the history of this iconic venue, a landmark of the city's industrial heritage. In the 1990s, an oil tank built originally in 1950s was preserved on the site of the former CEPSA refinery after the industry was dismantled to make way for new residential developments. Its adaptive reuse, completed in 1997 following an award-winning design by Spanish architect Fernando Menis, enabled maintaining its essence and the original aspect of the container. The extraordinary characteristics of the space—its ceiling height, dark interior and cylindrical shape, along with the powerful reverberation of its acoustics—make it unique, attracting artists from different disciplines who are eager to interact with the place and carry out experiences that would be impossible in a conventional venue. However, both the cultural program and the space itself are suffering from a severe lack of funds from the institutions responsible for its management and maintenance.

On July 6, 2019 in the brownfield that surrounds El Tanque, more than 30 artists exhibited their works on wooden chairs to demand more commitment from the authorities and as a reminder that the full renewal of the area surrounding the tank is still pending. The administration has actually approved a landscaping project designed by Fernando Menis, which includes a public garden planted with banana trees, but as of today it has never gone forward with the plans. 

The artworks, covering multiple disciplines and with a 67% female presence, were by: Volha BelevetsNebras TurdidaeLeodesinquietoPaz BarreiroJosé Manuel CarrascoPaloma HurtadoMaica Luis, Elia Estevez Noda, Emma Jane Bach, Guillermo Vázquez Zamarbide, Lucilla Bellini and Magalita Brincat, Claudia B. Esquivel, José Seigar, Arancha Gómez Iriarte, Irene Morales, Desirée Omar, Emili Bermúdez, Nazareth Hernández Gutiérrez, Jose Piñas Pisaca, Cristi Pérez, Raquel García, Julia Afonso Chillón, Fernando Miñarro, Fernando Lorenzo, José Saucedo, Daniel Hernández Brito, Marina Valls Mir, Elba Fragoso, Brigitte Fassin, Pendientera, Núria del Pino, Pura Márquez, Romén Trujillo and Felix Dario Ruggeri. After this act of protest, the works have come together forming the group exhibition El verano de nuestras vidas, which will travel to the island of Fuerteventura to be shown at Casa de los Coroneles (Calle los Coroneles, 28, La Oliva) from July 11 through July 25, 2019. 

The 5th edition of Tank Festival is taking place in Tenerife and Fuerteventura from July 4 to July 25, 2019, bringing together artists, architects, performers and art historians who have been invited to present their works, some of which were created in residency. Tank Festival 2019 promoted an international open call for artists and three residencies for Urban Art, Photography and Art History, respectively.

Tank Festival 2019 also launched a pioneering experience in Spain, an open call for the "Bandera Naranja" Award (Orange Flag), which recognizes and encourages good practices in cultural tourism policy. In this inaugural edition, the call was limited to city councils within the Canary Islands. The city council of Garachico was awarded the first prize while the city council of Arona received a special mention. For future editions, the call will be extend beyond the territory of the Canary Islands.

Tank Festival 2019 is organized by the nonprofit Asociación Amigos del Espacio Cultural El Tanque and supported by Canarias Cultura en Red - Gobierno de Canarias, Ministerio de Cultura y Deporte de España, Cabildo de Tenerife, Fundación CajaCanarias and Fundación La Caixa. For specific events, Tank Festival 2019 partnered with Festival Hatching and Fundación César Manrique.

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