Venezuelan Videoart for W:OW Art Film and Video Festival
Curated selection by Diana Rangel y María Bilbao-Herrera (nodoCCS)
PS. This Selection was made in 2017 and recently (July-August 2020) was programmed again in an online screening by W:OW that was held on August 11th 2020.
The present selection of videos comes from the participation of emerging Venezuelan artists who have been selected to participate in our International Video Art Festival nodoCCS, which this year celebrates its third edition in 2017.
nodoCCS is a multidisciplinary platform dedicated to research and training in contemporary artistic practices. We work in several continuous programs and various art projects. One of the main ones is the Videoart Festival nodoCCS that, through the support of artists, independent spaces and allies, we have managed to organize it for three consecutive years in Caracas, Venezuela.
The festival since its inception, seeks to address a young audience, opening a call for emerging artists from all parts of the world whose purpose is to promote a continuous articulation of national and international videoart. In this way the festival also ends up being a continuous reflection about how we understand the medium (video art) and the spaces in which we present it (which in our case, is not the classic white cube).
For this case we offer a selection of eight videos of Venezuelan artists, made in the last 7 years, that offer a panorama that could be articulated around the social, political and economic problems that Venezuela has suffered in the last 20 years.
While Elena Pastor, Kiari Bastardo and Max Provenzano direct their gaze towards a problem that today remains more current than ever: the shortage, Manuel González focuses on those projects of modernity abandoned today, revealing real difficulties that creep into the social and psychological, such as videos by Yenimar López and Abraham Araujo. Finally, we address the political aspect as the main cause of fragmentation of both economic and social projects (Andrés Rodríguez and Raúl Rodríguez) that conclude or in a certain way encompass aspects of all the previous ones.
These videos, although in their majority are still less known in the international and artistic field, they contribute to a great extent to an important history of video art in our country. It will be thanks to initiatives such as the Festival of Videoart Node CCS and WO:W Art Film and Video Festival, which will continue to weave a story interested in defining and contributing information to a medium such as Videoart.
Elena Pastor | So it was: transit in the city of shortage | 1’58” 2014
Caracas, a city that is built and deconstructed. The first, present in the long lines to buy medicines, food and household goods. The second, is built in the personal memory of the individual, in the memory of a better life. That’s how it was, a journey through the streets of the city, a multimedia composed of a photographic series and sound of advertising ads of the past. A rambling between decades, streets and desolation.
This was Caracas, that’s how it is today.
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* RED (Network or red color): Organization or synchronization of a set of simile elements that are under the same address.
R E D, is a bilateral discourse, a dichotomy between the innocuous resource weapon and its coupling with the human being. Judgment in simultaneous reaction to the armed repression and the crisis / country situation.
Critical apology to the violent and objectual saturation of being.
Dissociation of the body to matter.
De-configuration of an anthropomorphic entity to a dead matter.
Multiplication of antisocial individuals (di-social) governed by a thought that is not their own, choreographed and indoctrinated animals for the execution and repetition of an action. Force.
(*) definition postulated by the same artist. “
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Performance that places the individual in the timeless, from the present to the absence of time. The body is in this case, a whole in the space that is dissolving until it becomes totally invisible.
Manuel Eduardo González | Miramar (From the series “La Siembra del hito piedra”) (2015) | 7’47”
Miramar (2015) is a 7:42 minute documentary video about the hotel of the same name found in the Macuto area of Vargas state, in Venezuela. Starting from a study of the landscape as a symbol of identity, a tour of the hotel begins with fixed video shots that record the ruined spaces together with the variations of light and shade, the free occupation of vegetation and some birds that make life in the place.
Looking for the aestheticization of the data as the residue of an event, in this case the registration of an abandoned construction, a guided tour is established by the aesthetic relationship between the symmetrical photographic composition and the neo-classical architecture. Between an inside and an outside accompanied by the sound of the Caribbean Sea that we do not see, generating a counter-sense between our critical position on abandonment and the poetic charge made the image of ruin. A record that gives evidence of its current state, capturing the imprint left by other uses: as the blue paint on its walls placed while it was occupied by the Venezuelan Council of the Child, later known as the National Institute for Minors.
Max Provenzano | Lecha | 2014 | 1’40”
Lecha is a critic point of view of the current Venezuelan society, finding itself in a kind of automatism submerged in a system in which the simple existence of Paternalistic Governments is based on the solution through external pleasure, through the replacement of Objects, Products and Representative Figures. A permanent devotion regardless of the political tendency involved, behavior that has been observed frequently in the Venezuelan throughout history. The Absence of the representative figure of the Current Government, Hugo Chávez Frías, which image have been used and constantly reused as an icon, accentuated this fact from its physical disappearance.
On the other hand, in Dairy Consumption, with its continuous flow, the nonrenewable character of the resource is evidenced, the cessation of the supply of the fluid believed to be substantial for food. Thus the question arises: Which animal voluntarily feeds on the Milk of another Animal? We are consuming milk from another animal at the wrong time, outside the period of natural lactation. The shortage and the lack of supply opposed together with the excessive saturation of political propaganda conforming a seemingly visible scenario of what seems to be a reality.
Andrés Rodríguez Decena | Unitario n13 (2017) | 1’1”
The inclined shadow of a flag intermittently covers the inert body of the artist, placed in a fetal position on the floor of a public square.
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The existential irony of Venezuela represented in a cake becomes a technical image, extremely powerful as a device of thought, reflective and allegorical, to the core embezzlement in Venezuela.
The cake, like the Venezuelan territory, is distributed in hidden directions.
The video is supported in a black background hinting at the nothingness in which our country is suspended, a dark emptiness or structural failure that has been responsible for the debacle of the very conception that we have as a society.
This video has a sense of intent to make visible the link of the moral setback of our society on the perception of the ethical crisis as well as to make evident the unequal distribution of our richness in consequence of corrupt administrations without distinction.
Abraham Araujo | “A post it written to God. Even though he may never read it. Titled: Big tectonic movements happenings” | 4’52” (2016)
My proposal tries to follow a linear dialogue built from the cut + paste taking different resources that range from: television programs, known and obscure films, documentaries and personalities that in some way “discuss ” or analyze the issue of boredom and its various stages: possible causes, symptoms in modern life, common underestimation, the rare research that addresses the issue, the questioning as an exercise based on the educational system, and also, a look closer to curiosity, emotion, creation, and even destruction, among other playful methods to find ways to solve or deal with boredom.