100 catalogues, 4 textbooks, 2 videos, chalk, vinyl lettering
Patriot, Contemporary Museum, Baltimore, 2005
Whitney Independent Studio Program Exhibition, New York, 2005
Historias Oficiales, Celda Contemporánea, México City, 2006
This project is composed of two timelines that deploy archival material towards an inquiry into the transformation of
the Mexican government's political investment in pre-Hispanic iconography and history.
focuses on the contradictory institutional/governmental administration of this imagery through two cultural policies: on the one hand, the presentation of pre-Hispanic civilization in public school textbooks; on the other,
globe-trotting government-sponsored exhibitions of pre-Hispanic artifacts.
The first part of the installation consists of a compilation of 100 catalogues from more than fifteen public libraries in Mexico City.
These catalogues were published from 1959 to 2005 and are chronologically displayed on a wall.
They form a three dimensional chart where it is easy to read when the production of these kinds of exhibitions have been privileged
in the last 50 years. A silent video displays a series of quotes from the prologues of the exhibition catalogs.
Frequently, these texts are written by high-ranking government and other cultural officials who explain the motivations
behind the proliferation of these kinds of exhibitions.
In the second part of the installation, four text books (the original 1959 edition and its subsequent revisions) from an elementary school History course are displayed in clear cases. A study of their content is drawn with chalk on the walls and presented in a video.
Catalogues of prehispanic exhibitions, Celda Contemporánea
Elementary school textbooks of History, Celda Contemporánea
Chalk on wall, Celda Contemporánea