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Curatorial Practices
Interview with curator Priamo Lozada
by Donna Conwell

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LA: You were invited to participate in the video festival Freewaves. As part of the festival, you had an exhibition of video work here at the Laboratorio Arte Alameda that was selected by Claudia Prado, entitled Guonderguoman. Can you talk to us a bit about this?

PL: Guonderguoman was a project that began in two parts: Guoderguoman was the feminine part, but there was another part called Machomen, which was a video compilation made by Alfredo Salomon. The compilation Wonder Woman, pronounced in Mexican, is an attempt to bring together a group of female Mexican artists that have been working in video, not necessarily exclusively video artists like Ximena Cuevas or Grace Quintanilla, but also artists who work in the visual arts, but have made work in video, like Claudia Fernandez for example. So, when proposing a program with the theme of Wonder Woman the videos that are included obviously have to be about subjects related to being a woman in Mexico today. Therefore, questions of gender, maternity, identity, all those big themes, are present here along with other things, such as: the fear of an invasion of clones and voyeurism. Together they represent a broad panoramic vision of video work being created here in Mexico.

LA: Why do you think such a strong group of female artists working in video has emerged in Mexico?

PL: That is a very good question and I often ask myself that. I think that there is obviously a particular sensibility and I doní­t think it is something new: Ximena Cuevas, for example, has been working since the 1980s exclusively with video. She came from cinema but found in video something much more intimate and a lot more immediate that allowed her to express this inner self that she is interested in. Almost all Ximenaí­s work in one sense or another is autobiographic, therefore the immediacy of video allowed her something that film did not. I think that another very important aspect, above all for the majority of the artists that are in this exhibition, was the establishment at La Esmeralda (Escuela Nacional de Pintura, Escultura y Grabado / The National School of Painting, Sculpture and Engraving) of a video workshop headed by Sarah Minter. Amaranta Sanchez and Alejandra Echeverria came out of it. It acted as an important catalyst within creative circles and it was the first time that there was a permanent workshop in audio-visual mediums, where technical techniques, such as editing and so on, were demonstrated, as well as theories about audio visual creation. Therefore I think that on the one hand there is a generation that discovered video on their own, as is the case with Ximena Cuevas who came from other disciplines and found in video her ideal medium, and then there is a younger generation who are in some way already educated in and introduced to these new tools.

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