Reimagining is the great title of a sequence of visual arts exhibitions that arose from the need to face the transformations caused by the SARS-CoV-2, from the standpoint of possibilities offered by artistic creation and the museum as an institution.
The BCCR Visual Arts collection, in particular, includes works made in pre-pandemic contexts. They relate in several ways to some of the issues that became sensitive because of the direction taken by the political management of the pandemic: corporal distancing, confinement, border closure, health security, slow-down processes, reconfiguration of socio-economic dynamics, and environmental regeneration.
The works of art offer us possibilities to approach and connect from unsuspected perspectives with some of these issues and, through them, get a glimpse of some key aspects to drive one or many processes of reimagining our role in shaping the realities we need. In this exercise of correlations, three themes emerged which demand an urgent exercise of imagination: the community, the frontier and change.
Reimagining the community
The first exhibition, named "Reimaginar" is linked to the concept of community. From a theoretical standpoint, it relates to the idea of a project in constant transformation, an aspiration that aims at resolving the tension created by the blurry frontier, and porous between individuality and welfare.
From this perspective, "Reimagining the community" is part of a long-standing concern and feeds on those previous experiences to imagine what to do with some substantial principles of the community that the political management of the pandemic has raised as critical issues.
The health measures of confinement and physical distancing reinforced the dimension of the community as a structure that ensures the safety of its members through measures of fencing and defensive attack. As a corollary, all sorts of manifestations of inequality, disengagement, inability to establish empathies with the others, exacerbated individualism, and difficulty in identifying the common welfare came up.
As it was previously noted, some of the works in the BCCR's collection approach several of these topics from angles as dissimilar to each other as those with the pandemic context. Both in isolation and as a whole, these works look at details about the common welfare or its absence, stimulating enough to rethink our role in the existing order of things and our potential as agents of change from another place.
Many works approach the reflection on the idea of community through the research of shapes, colors, or materials, and the use of resources that involve the work in modules, seriality, assemblage, movement, and perception.
The play between sameness and difference is essential in these works, just as it is for the community.
Everyday life images drive attention to the dynamics or spaces where the sense of belonging is produced and reproduced; they offer significantly diverse approaches to the sense of community.
Urban sprawl processes have encouraged reflections upon the link between the transformation of the environment and political, economic, and sociocultural changes..
The city space offers and promotes suggestive images about the changes in human relationships.
The ways in which the link with the community is experimented has been a theme in various works.
La mismidad implica una serie de responsabilidades y de compromisos con el cuido del bien común, pero también supone beneficios relacionados con las certezas y la atmósfera de seguridad y de protección que crea la comunidad.
The experience of the otherness holds a central position with variables ranging from the coexistence with diversity to the rejection and exclusion arising from the incomprehension of differences.
Multimedia: artist interviews
Reimagining the border
The virus that spread without gender, class, age, or territorial discrimination triggered several defensive and social control measures, including territorial border closures, home confinement, and digital surveillance. Artwork from other times reflects that these situations are not new in the history of humanity.
Reimagining the change
The uncertainty caused by SARS-CoV-2 proved our tolerance for constant change. In artistic creation, change takes up an essential place, be it as a theme or as a resource of representation.