December 13, 2015 – January 24, 2016
Opening: Sunday, December 13, 4-7 pm
The first exhibit at LMAKgallery’s new location at 298 Grand Street will be Claudia Joskowicz’s two-screen video installation Los rastreadores (The Trackers).
Joskowicz’s work looks at history and its repercussions on landscape. In her videos and installations, the viewer’s gaze is directed to the physical movement of the camera through a cinematic space where historic events and personal stories with a historic dimension are revisited and anchored in her native Latin American landscape. The action in Los rastreadores transpires in Jokowicz’s home town of Santa Cruz de la Sierra, Bolivia and is divided into four chapters composing a disjointed narrative that follows Ernesto Suarez Duarte, its main character. Ernesto’s character was inspired by Roberto Suárez Goméz, a Bolivian drug trafficker nicknamed “the king of cocaine” who, in the early1980s, steered an influx of unaccounted income that pushed the city of Santa Cruz into unprecedented overnight growth, financed a military coup that instituted what is known as Bolivia’s narco-dictatorship, and, in a letter to Ronald Reagan, offered to pay Bolivia’s foreign debt of more than $3 billion in exchange for amnesty for his son who was imprisoned in Miami at the time.
Formally inspired by John Ford’s 1956 classic western film The Searchers, Los rastreadores takes the western film as a departure point, looking at how both interiors and the landscape are framed and the metaphorical implications of their framing. It merges and distills issues of race, class systems, and alienation into a minimal narrative that condenses a massacre in Ernesto’s house, the kidnapping of his daughter, and the beginning of her search. Using silences and voice-overs, it centers on the power of myth where events operate as a displacement for the political discourse in the country.
Special thanks to the MIT Program in Art, Culture & Technology who provided equipment support for this exhibition.