¡ITE!/ ¡NENO!/ ¡AQUÍ! - RESPONSES TO COVID-19 IN CRISIS GALLERY
Until December 14, the Lima gallery presents the exhibition of artists Santiago Yahuarcani and Harry Pinedo / Inin Metsa, curated by Rember Yahuarcani and Giuliana Borea. It is a real-time reflection by indigenous artists and thinkers on how Covid-19 has impacted the lives of native and urban Amazonian populations, evaluating the responses of the State, civil society and survival strategies.
Curated by the artist and writer Rember Yahuarcani and the anthropologist Giuliana Borea, who have a long history of collaboration, in this exhibition they once again use the “we” as an arena to think about agendas that bring them closer together, without canceling the differences and without claiming a neutral voice. “We, the Amazonian people, have been suffering the impact of Covid-19 along with a long history of oppression and neglect by governments and society that still do not take us seriously as citizens and citizens with rights and their own voice. However, we have learned to put our voices and bodies together and look for ways to respond to adversity. ¡AQUÍ! shows our presence, our right and fight for life, and the right to defend our way of life”, describe Yahuarcani and Borea.
Furthermore, this exhibition in a commercial art gallery is intended as an explicit intervention of indigenous art and voice in the art market. ¡Aquí! receives support and is part of the project "Conquering Self-representation: A collaborative approach to the political-aesthetic dimension of Amazonian art" (Amazonart) of the University of Essex, and of the project "Art and Activism against repression during the Covid-19 Crisis” from the University of York (UK).
Santiago Yahuarcani (b. 1960) is a visual artist and indigenous leader of the Uitoto people. His work revolves around Amazonian ontologies and genocide policies against the Amazonian peoples. His work on indigenous suffering and exploitation with the rubber boom has impacted the national memory of Peru. He has also delved into issues of extractivist exploitation and currently documents and expresses indigenous strategies towards Covid-19. Among his most recent exhibitions is "El Lugar de los Espíritus" (ICPNA 2019). His work is included in the collection of the Museo de Arte de Lima and the San Marcos Art Museum, and has been featured in exhibitions in Latin America, the United States, Europe and Asia. He is currently a recipient of the scholarship "Art and Activism against repression during the Covid-19 Crisis" from the University of York.
Harry Pinedo / Inin Metsa (b.1988) is a visual artist and intercultural teacher. He belongs to the Shibipo people and lives in the community of Cantagallo. His work focuses on the internal migration of Amazonian Shipibo native communities to Lima and the various battles to establish a native urban community, raising issues of citizenship and rights to housing, health and education. His first solo exhibition “El Esplendor del Yanapuma” (2017) addressed pollution in the Amazon, receiving wide coverage and local impact. He is currently analyzing the Shipibo responses to COVID-19 and is the recipient of the scholarship "Art and Activism against repression during the Covid-19 Crisis" from the University of York.
Rember Yahuarcani is a visual artist and writer. His work focuses on the Uitoto ontologies and calls for respect for indigenous worlds. His work has been presented in Peru, Brazil, Argentina, the United States, the United Kingdom, China, among other countries, and has been the winner of the II Intercontinental Biennial of Indigenous Art. In the context of this pandemic, he has become a first-hand witness and an active voice that reports on the critical situation in the Amazon, proposing important reforms. He is currently a recipient of the scholarship "Art and Activism against repression during the Covid-19 Crisis" from the University of York.
Giuliana Borea has a Ph.D. in Anthropology from NYU. She directs the Amazonart Project as a Marie Curie fellow in the Department of Sociology at the University of Essex and is a professor in the Department of Social Sciences at the Pontifical Catholic University of Peru. She has been director of Museums and Management of Historical Heritage of the INC and coordinator of the Museum of Contemporary Art-Lima. Recent publications include the chapter written with Rember Yahuarcani "Amazonian Waterway, Amazonian Water-Worlds: Rivers in Government Projects and Indigenous Art" (2020). In addition, she is the editor of Arte y Antropología: Estudios, Encuentros y Nuevos Horizontes (PUCP 2017) and author of the book Configuring the New Lima Art Scene: An Anthropological Analysis of Contemporary Art in Latin America (Routledge 2021).