Monday, 24 May 2010
JUAN DOWNEY'S 'VIDEO TRANS AMERICAS' EXHIBITED AT TATE MODERN AS PART OF THE COLLECTION
Lima /Machu Pichu 1975
New York/Texas 1974
Lima/Machu Pichu 1975
Juan Downey's 'Video Trans Americas' combines aspects of travelogue, visual anthropology, the study of architectural and geographical space, politics and poetry. Responding in part to the 1973 military coup in Chile, Downey wanted to foster a transnational Latin American identity. He initially envisaged his project as a road trip, from New York to the southern tip of Latin America, during which he would videotape aspects of the distinct cultures )art, architecture, cooking, dance, landscape, language, etc.) of the regions he passed through. At the same time, he would show the local inhabitants previous tapes shot along the way, in order to share information and overcome the isolation of individual communities.
In practice, the fourteen videos that eventually formed the installation were made over a series of journeys between 1973 and 1976. each video es positioned on a map of the Americas to show the location of filming.
Juan Downey (1940-1993) was born in Santiago Chile. He lived and worked in New York.
'Video Trans Americas' acquired for Tate by the Latin American Acquisitions Committee.