Architectures of Memory
A project by Derzu Campos
Saturday, August 6th, Opening, 6 pm
Friday, August 12th, 6-8 pm
Wednesday, August 17th, 4-7 pm
Friday, August 19th, 5-7 pm
Thursday, August 25th, Artist Talk & Finissage, 7 pm
*And by appointment
Architectures of Memory presents the latest and perhaps most ambitious project by Mexican artist Derzu Campos: Le Départ, an audiovisual piece consisting of a black and white slide projection within an immersive installation.
Le Départ takes the 50th anniversary of the 1968 student movements around the world as the starting point of a timeline made of images that interconnect past, present and future in an attempt to imagine other possible realities. Described by the artist as “a movie in 80 slides” the work brings the audience in a space between science fiction and memory, a combination that would otherwise appear impossible.
Starting as a science fiction narrative, Le Départ leads to a historical account of the student movements in Mexico and other parts of the world and unravels a series of personal memories from the artist. Three accounts (personal, historical and imagined) and three timelines imagined by the artist (each one spanning 50 years: 1968 - 2018 - 2068 - ∞) are interwoven in the slide presentation, giving way to an alternative narrative in which time collapses into a discontinuum.
Each one of the pictures comprised in the piece were carefully selected or created by the artist, following an exhaustive comparative search of images. Looking for associations between very dissimilar visual elements (personal photographs, iconic images from history and popular culture, memes, film stills, abstract paintings and a Photo-roman) makes up the fundamental nature of the work. Consequently, the piece fulfils a retrospective and speculative function that simultaneously points to the past and the future.
As explained by the artist, the work can also be seen as “a love letter to science fiction, Walter Benjamin’s Theses on the Philosophy of History, and the utopian movements of the last century.” However, the piece also marks an important turning point on Campos’ production. While most of his work has been focused on imagining post- apocalyptic scenarios through a mixture of science fiction and underground culture, Le Départ starts pointing to alternative futures in which hope and re-construction are also a possibility.
Le Départ successfully combines the media that the artist has explored in his past projects: video, installation, graphic work and sound. Conceived as a cinematographic work, the piece is accompanied by a soundtrack composed specifically for the project by Mexican musician and producer Turning Torso.
Curated by Adriana Domínguez.
With the generous support of:
Index Freiraum-Stipendium, Kanton Zürich Fachstelle Kultur and Relaciones Exteriores México
Credits for Le Départ: Featuring Simone Bucio. With Benjamín Lobo, Rosaly Graterol, Dante Wong. Photography by Juan Pablo Ramírez. Art Direction by Perla Castañón and Gabriela Garciandía. Costumes provided by Arkatha and Gabriela B. Music by Turning Torso; sound design by Mr. Shhh (Antonio Castillo). With the suppport of Pablo Delgado, Emilio Ortega, Lucía Taibo, Milena Benmuyal, Danae Martínez. Made with the support of the National Fund for Culture and the Arts (FONCA), as part of the National System of Art Creators, Mexico.
This work is dedicated to José Ángel Campos, the Autogobierno programme of the Faculty of Architecture (UNAM), and the student movements of 1968. May the fight never be forgotten.