postal extralocalsArtistic practices in exotic contexts
28.02.2014 - 03.05.2014

Opening, 28 February at 7.00 pm

Caldo de cultivo + Todo por la praxis. Arriba los de abajo | Bogotà
Mariona Moncunill.Text on Snow on the Botanical Garden | Helsinki
Núria Güell.Too Much Melanin | Estocolm
Roser Caminal.NOW&THEN. Picture yourself | El Caire

This exhibition presents four artistic projects realised ​​from temporary residences in cities which are not the usual residence of the artists. Projects with ideas, attitudes and diverse interests such as creating collective and collaborative practices in urban contexts, the poetics between blurred reality and the sharpness of scientific classification, the critique of advanced societies which restrict the movements of people and favour the movement of capital, or the educational project based on the future aspirations of preteens while analysing the time and the cultural context in which they live.

Specific issues which tackle elements common among them, such as the relationship between the local and the visitor, their adaptability to and the connections which they establish with the place, the intensity and timing of the projects, the implications for the local context and the universal interest of their treatment, and the importance of moving within an international context . A number of issues which take on relevance in a moment such as the present one, marked by a growing  political and citizen populism, which in many Western countries, is committed to the protection of borders, the promotion of a perception of the invasion of the strange, and the acceleration of anti-immigration policies and speeches.

Extralocals is an exhibition which provides insight into local contexts and circumstances from the perspective of one who has lived in a town for a short time, but long enough not to be considered a stranger. A stay which would not have been possible without the existence of a network of cultural connections which support flux and contamination by fluid circulation, the right to access the resources of the city, the right to change it, and the right to aspire to universal citizenship

This project aims to promote discussion about gentrification faced by La Perseverancia , a district in central Bogota.

A common mechanism in these processes is the elimination of the memory of neighbourhoods in order to cancel the sense of belonging to a place, thus facilitating the removal and replacement of those who live there.The memory at La Perseverancia  is clearly rooted in its identity as a working-class neighbourhood and its history is closely linked to the Bavaria brewery and Jorge Eliecer Gaitan, a popular Liberal leader killed when running for president , leading to the Bogotazo, popular riots  and the sacking of the capital of Colombia in 1948. Gaitán baptised La Perseverancia as the "Red Belt" of Bogota. To forget the historical struggle and break their rebel memory is the first step in weakening community ties and the possibility of collective action .

The intervention is formalised through the creation of a physical signpost with one of the most representative phrases of the labour movement: Amunt els de baix (Rise up, those below). This volumetric signpost is set to one side of a scaffold, so as not to block the view of La Perseverancia and its conflict, as well as to bring attention and value to elements of identity.

A project with the collaboration of Caldo de Cultivo and Todo por la Praxis with the La Perserverancia neighbors of Bogotà, and the production of La Otra Bienal.

[http://www.todoporlapraxis.es] i [http://www.caldodecultivo.com]

Todo por la praxis is structured as a laboratory for aesthetic projects of cultural resistance, a laboratory developing tools with the ultimate goal of generating a toolkit for direct and socially effective action. The group is made up of a multidisciplinary team which developed much of its work focusing on the collaborative construction of micro-architectural and micro- urban planning devices to allow the recapture of the public and their collective use.

Caldo de Cultivo is a cross-disciplinary group, based in Bogota, which carries out projects which are nourished through different disciplines, based on interventions in public space. In recent years they have carried out projects in districts around different countries, in order to sow the seeds for critical thinking about the problems and potential of these territories. They propose to imagine urban space as necessarily conflicting and contradictory, as ground for fighting political and poetic creation, as temporal scenario for the construction of the common, as a place for creativity and insurgent resistance.

Interview in the exhibition Extralocals


Text on Snow on the Botanical Garden is based on a theoretical and field research conducted during a two-month residency at HIAP Helsinki during the winter of 2013. The project revolves around the display and the exhibition narrative elements at the Botanical Garden Kaisaniemi of the same city, taking advantage of the surprise generated by the fact that plants are invisible under the snow and the signs labelling the plants remain visible on the surface. The project's objective is the analysis, the reutilisation and the visualisation of certain elements of discourse, narration and legitimacy of the Botanical Garden such as the plant-labelling signs, guided tours or plantation maps. The title refers to this whole discursive textuality on the snow.

Four works resulted from this investigation, of which two are shown here: Every visible sign without visible plant consists of 220 small format photographs of all the plant-signs of the Botanical Garden which, in the winter of 2013, were notably isolated by the snow, seeming as if they were the subject of the exhibit, without a visible referent (the plants) to indicate. The photographs are taken with documentary intention, and in exhaustive detail, with the aim of displaying the plant-signs as if they were the protagonist object of the botanical garden, rather than a text referring to another object.

Signs causing mental images causing oral descriptions causing mental images is a video of the conversation between the artist and an expert in botany, a regular guide at the Botanical Garden, who tries to describe some plants hidden under the snow from a reading of the labels. Plants thus only appear through three mental images: as imagined by the guide in order to describe the plant, imagined by the artist, listening to his description, and imagined by the viewer of the video. Plants hidden under the snow, like their names on the signs, act as a narrative trigger, becoming representative, as physical descriptions, tangible, of their entire species.

With the collaboration of the Botanical Garden Kaisaniemi and supported by HIAP and Fundación Especial Caja Madrid.

Mariona Moncunill (Tarragona, 1984) lives and works in Barcelona. Among her individual exhibitions include Habrá que aceptar, además, que es lo que tenemos (Sala de Exposiciones Diputación de Huesca, Huesca, 2012), Menjadors (Espai 13, Fundació Joan Miró, Barcelona, 2012) and Especialització de la Biblioteca (Espai Cultural Caja Madrid, Barcelona, 2010). She participated in collective exhibitions like Still Light (Gallery Augusta, Hèlsinki, 2013), Relat de Belles Coses Falses (Centre d’Art Lo Pati, Amposta, 2013) and La Qüestió del Paradigma (Centre d’Art la Panera, Lleida, 2011) and she recieved awards and scholarships like the Beca Ramón Acín de Artes Plásticas (2011), la Beca a la Creació Artística Fundació Guasch Coranty (2010), el Premi Miquel Casablancas (2008) o beques de residència a HIAP (Hèlsinki, 2013) and Rupert (Vilnius, 2013).

Interview in the exhibition Extralocals

nuriaguell 01NÚRIA GÜELL

Too much melanin was undertakenonthe occasion of theartist'sparticipationinthe biennialGothenburgandStockholmtwo months stayin spaceIASPISresidence.

 The project takes the reference that Maria is a political refugee from Kosovo who at that time had lived with her family in Sweden illegally for 9 years, 4 years of which in hiding, since the state has twice denied her asylum. The only change in the rules of the game is that Maria is always hidden, and the spectators, rather than the state, are always looking for her. At the end of her employment contract with the Biennale, Maria was able to obtain her work permit, and so no longer had to hide from the police. Maria was, in Kosovo , a police officer specialising in the disappearance and trafficking of women.

Sweden, like most European Union countries, is implementing policies of racist criminalisation to migrant groups. The REVA project, promoted by the Swedish government, is to pay bonuses to the police for every illegal immigrant caught, and is an example of the repressive xenophobic logic established within the institutional framework. I'm interested in reconsidering the ideological spin which is applied to pass from a humanitarian policy to a utilitarian one, which makes people illegal, and which legalises the free movement of goods.
Legal Framework :
On 18 June 2008 the European Parliament passed "The Return Directive" ( 2008/115/CE ) , which issued to member states an expulsion order to irregular immigrants, establishing a period of "voluntary return" of between 7 and 30 days. After this period, the authorities may place them in detention centres for Foreigners (CIE) for a period of 6 months before their expulsion, which may be extended to eighteen months in some cases. Deported immigrants, and those who do not abide by the order of "voluntary return" were prohibited from entering any EU country for 5 years. Member States have included this set of rules in their legislation, each national government deciding how to apply "The Directive".
Since 2009 the Swedish government has implemented the Rea project ( Rättssäkert och effektivt verkställighetsarbete, in english "Fair and Effective management Act "), which aims to "maintain order", increasing deportations of immigrants; funded by the European Return Fund, which financially rewards police officers for every successful deportation of an illegal immigrant.

Núria Güell with a positioning strict oriented to generate mechanisms of dissent, the work of Nuria Guell addresses and reformulates the limits of legality, discovering abuses of power committed by the institutions which govern us through the established law. Her projects are developed as disruptive tactics in specific contexts which alter institutional power relations, where she engages and collaborates with agents and institutions, creating multidisciplinary networks.
A graduate in Arts from the University of Barcelona, she continued her studies at the Càtedra de Arte de Conducta  in Havana (Cuba) under the direction of Tania Bruguera . Her work has been exhibited at the Biennials of Havana, Pontevedra, Ljubljana, Gothenburg and Liverpool, as well as at the Triennale in Tallinn and museums in Barcelona, The Hague, Madrid, Hertogenbosch, Paris, New York, Chicago, Miami, Formigine, London, Stockholm, Istanbul, Leipzig, Bucharest, Zagreb, Cali, Lima, Berlin and Graz, and in various self-organised social centres.


Interview in the exhibition Extralocals

rocaminal 01ROSER CAMINAL

NOW & THEN.Picture yourself is a workshop, aimed at pre-teen girls from the Ard el Lewa district of Cairo, where the project was conducted in November and December 2011, thanks to an artists exchange grant for the social context intervention, including the art centres  CAN at Farrera and Artellewa in Cairo.

During the workshops, of a playful and creative character, participants Amira Taha, Fatma Hisham, Ganna Hamada, Hadeer Salah, Malak Hamada, Rawda Ezz and Yara Sayed, using drawing, photography, performance and sculpture, explored their present and their hopes for the future, taking into consideration their own social context. The workshop created a space for dialogue where listening was as important as talking. Under the premise of creating rag dolls which represented the participants as self-imagined professionally in the future, the girls learned to develop critical attitudes and subjective positions, to decide the look of the dolls, which eventually they took as their own. The development of theatrical scripts where the dolls acted as if the girls were already adults, allowed them to explore and to take positions about their imagined daily routine in areas beyond  professional and family life and free time. To conclude the workshop there was an exhibition of the dolls and a video made by the girls.

The exhibition format allowed the girls to tell their parents and the neighbourhood their dreams, reaffirming their attitudes and their positions by making them public .
Wissam Selim collaborated in the workshop.

Roser Caminal has a degree in Fine Arts from the University of Barcelona (UB, 2012) and currently combines her artistic projects with a PhD in Social and Cultural Anthropology. Her research is characterised by a sociological perspective and a criticism of systems of representation, where a desire to give art value in utility and in social construction predominate.
She has participated in numerous exhibitions, has been selected for various residency projects of social art, and was a winner of the competition Contextador 2013, CA Tarragona.

Interview in the exhibition Extralocals

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