SUMMATIVE ASSESSMENT

Working with the Found Object

Primary research

In this project I worked with an object found in my accommodation and public bathrooms: Disposal Bags. It caught my interest because I didn´t know about them and had an interesting detail: the image of a Victorian lady. I believe this is a symbol of the female stereotype and relates to the concept of shame associated with menstruation.

Disposal bags in accommodation and public bathrooms (Self-authored photographs)

Disposals bags founded on internet where the pattern of drawings associated with a delicate femininity is repeated (Self-authored collage).

The first approach to the project was to use the bag to hide any element of the city that embarrasses us. Although, after the discussing sessions, I decided to focus on the bag and its original purpose, because is an object use to hide menstruation even when nobody is seen it.

I experimented by intervening the bags with messages making their purpose more explicit and introducing messages inside them with menstrual-related content.

Experimentation on Disposal Bags (Self-authored photographs). Text on the messages inside was wrote based in this sources: Medine plus; NHSHOPE; Hello Clue.

Secondary research

JANNIS KOUNELLIS (Greece) (1936 – 2017) / Arte Povera`s artist

Kounellis presents objects and elements in a way that allow them to exist in a totally new perspective, where “everything and anything had the potential to be seen, regardless of its aesthetic or perceived use-value”[1].

Untitled (2000). 13 military hospital beds; 11 steel forms; 19 steel plates; 35 military blankets (Source: https://www.artbasel.com/catalog/artwork/85806/Jannis-Kounellis-Untitled)

ROSELLA BISCOTTI (Italy) (1968-) / Multimedia artist

Biscotti cross the boundaries of what could be considered as art, taking everyday elements from the past and the present, to transform them in a piece of art with a powerful message that allows the audience to deeply question some concepts that we take for granted.

Yellow Movie (2010). Film projection. Assembles a yellow frame with an audio work edited from recordings of controversial psychoanalytic sessions. Photo by: Hugo Muñoz (Source: https://wilfriedlentz.com/work/yellow-movie-2010/)

NICANOR PARRA (Chile) (1914-2018) / Anti-Poet

He made (anti) installations with found objects and words, giving the object a new meaning through this juxtaposition.

Practical work collection (1996-2002). Image 1: Message in a bottle; Image 2: I`ll be back soon (Source: http://www.memoriachilena.gob.cl/archivos2/pdfs/MC0013511.pdf).

Australian marketing campaign (2010)

This billboard was intentionally vandalized adding hair and changing the text over a perfume advertising, transforming it into something different and playing with the male stereotype.

(Source: https://www.adsoftheworld.com/media/outdoor/chill_les_man_adshel)

FINAL WORK: YES, I`M BLEEDING

Finally, I decided to go on with the previous experimentation and intervene the bags with messages explicitly talking about menstruation inside and outside them. These were written with markers and pens. Also, I painted the lady´s dress to resemble the blood.

Intervened bag photos (Self-authored photographs).

I placed them in locations throughout Edinburgh city, like bus stop and other crowded places.  The aim was to take the bags out of their private place, the women`s bathroom, to public space involving citizens in the intervention by making them react to the object.

Bags placed in the city (Self-authored photographs)

The day after, the bags appeared to have been opened and some of the messages inside had been taken out. One of them was removed from the site, which can indicate rejection to the message in the bags. I considered the intervention successful with respect to the objective of the work. However, to make a greater impact I could have recreated the bags in a larger size.

[1] Thorne, H. (2019, June 7th). Jannis Kounellis: A Taxonomy of Tired Things. Recovered from https://www.frieze.com/article/jannis-kounellis-taxonomy-tired-things


Making and Breaking Narratives

Primary research

In this work I opted to work with narratives related to my nationality and how Chile is represented abroad, because in Edinburgh I have talked with a wide range of people, and I noticed that they have some bias and do not know much about Chile. In addition, the UK government site has a section called foreign travel advice: CLICK HERE TO SEE THE WEBSITE; where the information about Chile is quite exaggerated.

Example of exaggerated information (Image source: https://www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice/chile).

On the other hand, Chile shows itself abroad as a country with wonderful landscapes and a culture isolated from the daily life of its inhabitants. As is shown in this video from the chilean Sub-secretariat of Tourism (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DR51pgjWXi8):

In addition, I asked people close to me what is the first thought they have when they listen to the word Chile.

Answers obtained to the question made on my Instagram platform: “F*ck Chile”; “It has a little bit of everything and the craziest people in the world live there!!”; “Mountains”; “Piscola [chilean typical drink]“; “I want to get out of hereeee jajajajajaja”; “Food”; “Take me away”; “Family…specially when I was in the USA”; “All the times I have said no more Chile”; “F*ck country”.

Regarding to all the above, my first attempt was to experiment juxtaposing some views through a collage.

Experimental collage made with screencaps from the above video and famous images of Chile´s 2010 earthquake and 2019 protests (Self-authored collage).

Original images:

Chile`s 2010 Earthquake and Tsunami (Source: https://cnnespanol.cnn.com/2018/09/28/10-cosas-unicas-de-chile/)

Chile`s 2019 riots (Source: https://www.primeralineaprensa.cl/?p=3744)

Screencaps from Chile, where the impossible is possible (Source: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DR51pgjWXi8&t=1s)

Secondary Research

Jesse Jones (Ireland) (1978-) / Contemporary multimedia artist

Jones mixes film, performance, installation, and collective structures to explore, question and challenge historical narratives in culture through current concepts [2]. A remarkable element in her works is the re-script or re-enact from previous films or dramatic works to give them a new look from today’s perspective.

The Other North (2013). Film where South Korean people re-enact therapy sessions held by an American psychologist in the 1970s in Northern Ireland (Source: https://www.jessejonesartist.com).

Alberta Whittle (Barbados) (1980-) / Multimedia artist, researcher, and curator

Whittle explores concepts as racism, colonialism, inclusion, and diversity using film, collage, installation, sculpture and founded objects. Her work allows the viewers to question the society and themselves to battle xenophobia and racism through challenging mainstream narratives [3].

Business as Usual (2020). Collage with juxtaposed images of body, culture, and stereotypes about them. It challenges the narrative of power about inclusion (Source: https://www.albertawhittle.com/business-as-usual.html)

FINAL WORK: JUXTAPOSE

For this project I made an audiovisual piece juxtaposing images, text and sound of the video Chile, where the impossible…. (idealised view of Chile), with audio-visual footage of the country from a range of sources (other narratives from people and alternative media), and text from UK government website (narrative from another country). The elements sometimes are in accordance and sometimes are totally contrary, challenging what is being said by the official voices. This aims not only to question but also to broaden the narratives on and from Chile.

Final video / Juxtapose

(https://vimeo.com/696029131)

[3] Paik, S. (2018). Jesse Jones. https://ocula.com/artists/jesse-jones/

[4] Alberta Whittle. (n. d.). Biography. https://www.albertawhittle.com/biography.html


Mapping the Soundscape

Primary research

In this project I made an exploration in two city spaces: the court my window overlooks and Dublin during Saint Patrick`s Day weekend.

From my window

I live in Edinburgh city centre close to the Royal Mile where a lot of people walk around by day and night. I thought this could be interesting because I hear a wide variety of sounds related to live in a city, as drunk people, birds, ambulances, tourists, etc.

SoundCloud playlist with the sounds without edition:

(https://soundcloud.com/maria-francisca-escobar-nachar/sets/from-my-window)

St. Patrick´s Day

I went to Dublin from 17th to 21th March and recorded many sounds related to St. Patrick`s day. I was interested in all the sounds that could be part of the festivity atmosphere. But as the weekend passed, I realised that the festivities were not all over the place and I looked for other things to do and hear in the city, visiting beaches and surrounding towns.

SoundCloud playlist with some of the sounds without edition:

(https://soundcloud.com/maria-francisca-escobar-nachar/sets/st-patricks-feelings)

Secondary research

London Unseen (2008-2020)

These soundmaps are hosted in London Sound Survey (https://www.soundsurvey.org.uk/), website with a sound collection of everyday life in London through the years. I found remarkable that the  authors do not tell the auditors about the places where the sounds came from, so they must pay attention to guess what the location is or imagine it.

Two sound maps where the sounds are associated with images (Source: https://www.soundsurvey.org.uk/index.php/london_unseen/pitcairn)

Two layers of cake (2020)

http://acts-of-air.crisap.org/two-layers-of-cake.html

Created by Yara Mekawei (Egypt, 1987-), music and sound artist, the work is part of Acts of Air: Reshaping the urban sonic. This work presents several layers of sounds recorded in Old Cairo along the year.  The work invite the auditors to become part of a sound walk hearing the audios in their own environment. I found fascinating how in each auditor who listens to it a new sound construction is generated in situ.

FINAL WORK: ST. PATRICK`S FEELINGS

After the discussion sessions and research, I decided to work with the Dublin sounds. I made a proposal for a sound walk where the auditor is invited to travel with me to the city during the festivities.

The first aim is to visit through sound the most crowded places, feeling the music and the party, but also the moments of tension and escape from the noise of the city. The second aim is to build connections and reflections between the places where the listener is located and the sounds they hear. For this the auditor must follow the indications:

(Orginal file: https://drive.google.com/file/d/1b-fhz1gFnTykx7d8cpA7ChzzDoDyCyyA/view?usp=sharing)

The sound walk is available at the following site and is freely accessible to anyone who wants to experience it:

https://624dc6fd58d2a.site123.me/

Screen capture from the site (Self-authored)

On this occasion it was not possible for me to collect experiences from people who did the sound walk. In this way, the analysis of the audience`s reception is a pending challenge.

 

 

 

Project 3: Research and sound exploring

First, I want to highlight two art works that I found interesting and inspiring:

London Unseen in London Sound Survey

https://www.soundsurvey.org.uk/index.php/london_unseen/pitcairn

This consist of two sound maps where the sounds are associated with images. The first map associates the sounds with icons and the second does the same with bees on a beehive. I found these proposals interesting because the association is not explicit and the authors do not tell the auditor about the places where the sounds came from, so they must pay attention to try to guess what the location is or imagine it.

Two layers of cake, by Yara Mekawei, in Acts of Air: Reshaping the urban sonic

http://acts-of-air.crisap.org/two-layers-of-cake.html

This artwork consists in several layers of sounds from a neighbourhood in Old Cairo recorded during different times during the year and capturing different atmospheres and types of sound. The work invites the auditors to hear it in a location with historical background in an urban environment where the past and present can be heard. I found remarkable that the artist invites the auditors to become part of the sound map. Furthermore, is fascinating how in each auditor who listens to the proposal in his or her environment, a new sound construction is generated in situ.


Second, I want to expose my own sound exploration based in two sound researchs:

From my window

During the last weeks I have been recording sounds from my window. I live facing The Mound Street and Princess Gardens, close to the Castle and the Royal Mile so a lot of people walk around, and I have experienced different kinds of sound as songs from drunk people, street performers and animals.

In this SoundCloud playlist you can hear some of this sounds:

St. Patrick´s Feelings

I went to Dublin from 17th to 21 th March and I recorded many sounds related to St. Patrick`s day and other sounds from places around Dublin. I believe this sounds could be arranged in a Dublin map without names or zones, only symbols or icons that invite you to listen to the sounds of each place visited, without giving more explanation than the context.

In this SoundCloud playlist you can hear some of this sounds:

Project 2: Feedback and progress

Based on the feedback received in the last formative review session I make progress in the development of project 2. First, I explored in more depth the concepts of Colonialism and Developing countries, because in one hand UK has a long history as a colonising nation and, on the other hand, Chile has a long story as a colonised country, although nowadays it is considered one of the most developed countries in Latin America. Related to these some questiones emerges:

What is a developed country?

Why Chile is considered developed if we are one of the countries with the widest social class inequality gap?

Regarding the concept of colonialism, I found this interesting quote:

“[the] nations are hybrid narrative constructions that result from the interaction of the colonizing and colonized cultures, and that these nationhoods exist in a liminal space between competing cultural traditions and historiographies”1.

Based on the above I decided to work with the sentence shown in the reference video (see last post): Chile where the impossible is possible.

(Collage made with screencaps from the video and famous images of Chile´s 2010 earthquake and 2019 protests).

The aim of the audiovisual piece is to confront the mysterious and mystical image of Chile that is share in the official video, with what I and other people experience in our daily life in the country through real footage registered by us. Also, our daily life has some “impossible” things as we are developing a unique process in the world, the writing of a new constitution in a 100% democratic process, a president who received a pokemon toy as a present from Japan government or Edinburgh supermarket prices with “developing” country wages.

In addition, I have been thinking about where could I present the video? What place could be better? Inspired by the work of Angelica Mesiti, I believe that this audiovisual piece could be in an international or national museum being part of an exhibition.

(Source: https://www.southlondongallery.org/wp-content/uploads/2017/12/Quarry_B0A1010-2.Crop_.jpg)

The piece can be shown at intervals and before to each viewing people could be invited to write on a piece of paper what they know, think or imagine about Chile. Then, at the end of the video they would be invited to reflect on the previous ideas they had and what they saw and write down their conclusions on the same paper. The piece of papers could be placed on a wall next to the exhibition room and form a new piece of the art work.

(Sources: Image 1, https://images.unsplash.com/photo-1552664688-cf412ec27db2?ixlib=rb-1.2.1&ixid=MnwxMjA3fDB8MHxzZWFyY2h8MXx8c3RpY2t5JTIwbm90ZXN8ZW58MHx8MHx8&w=1000&q=80; Image 2: https://cdn.vox-cdn.com/thumbor/1S8zYZuBZRRRO8NCd2snO3U5Q1o=/0x0:1620×1080/1200×800/filters:focal(681×411:939×669)/cdn.vox-cdn.com/uploads/chorus_image/image/52325135/30956396166_cfa532c5e1_o.0.jpeg)

References

1. Kay, Morgan. Gendered Postcolonial Discourse in the Mabinogi. Proceedings of the Harvard Celtic Colloquium 24/25 (2004), 216–28. http://www.jstor.org/stable/40285191

Project 2: Developing the concept

After researched how other artists work with narratives and think about the ideas emerged after this, I decided to work with the following concept:

  • How Chile is represented from abroad and how Chile presents itself to abroad.
I decided to work with this concept because is more specific and I have much information and background related to it compared to others ideas that emerged previously.
The concept emerged because in my time in Edinburgh I have been talking with different people from a range of ages and nationalities and I have noticed that Chile is imagined, for example, as a very warm place with sun during all the year and most people seem surprised to realised that the climate in southern Chile is very similar to that of Scotland. Also, a few people knows about other characteristics as the food,  language or the important political process as the writing of a new constitution after one of the largest protests in Latin America in the last years.
In addition, the UK government site has a section called Foreign travel advice where they provide information of different countries, Chile among them:
In this website I noticed that there is many information that is quite exaggerated. One example of this is when they talked about terrorism:
Image source: UK Government website

With this in mind I am thinking about doing an audiovisual piece that looks like a promotional video about Chile and its characteristics using the text on this website as a script with some texts additions based on what people had told me about what they know about Chile. The short film will have an voice-over edited with images from Chile that sometimes will be in accordance with what is said and sometimes totally contrary to it. This aims not only to question but also to broaden the narratives about Chile on this side of the world.

With this in mind I am thinking about doing an audiovisual piece that looks like a promotional video about Chile, such as the one presented below:


Audiovisual Treatment

The script will be made based on texts extracted from the Foreign advice website, the promotional video shown above, what the people had told me about Chile and what I know about my country.

The short film will have an voice-over edited with images that sometimes will be in accordance with what is said and sometimes totally contrary to it. The video will considere te following footage:

– Images produced by myself in previous occasions in Chile (protests, journeys, assemblies, family)

– Footage from chilean television

– Footage from foreign television

All the mentioned above aims not only to question but also to broaden the narratives about Chile on this side of the world.

Project 2: Research for inspiration

These last two weeks have been dedicated to research the work of other artists and the ways in which they create or break narratives about different actual topics.

I found very interesting and outstanding works in the following artists:

Jesse Jones (Ireland)

She is a Dublin-based artist who uses multiple formats in her artwork mixing film, performance, installation, and collective structures to explore, question and challenge historical narratives in culture through current concepts and situation. Her work challenges the status quo and allows the audience to reflect on concepts as feminism, the law and its physical influence on the excluded bodies in society, historical events that has divided societies in countries as Ireland or Korea, among other topics.

A remarkable element in some or her works is the re-script or re-enact from previous films, situations, or dramatic works to give them a new look from today’s perspective. An example of this is The Other North (2013), a film where people re-enact therapy sessions held by an American psychologist in the 1970s. These sessions were made in Northern Ireland and were seeking to gathered people from different political and social backgrounds to resolve historical conflicts (Source: https://www.jessejonesartist.com). She developed this work after archive research of Northern Ireland and research visits to South Korea.

(Source: Jesse Jones website)

In this work, Jones give us the possibility to know and empathize with the experiences of people whose lives were severely impacted by politic, economic and social conflicts and connect two experiences, North Ireland and Korea, through the re-enact of Northern Ireland stories by South Korean people.


Alberta Whittle (Barbados / Scotland)

Artist, researcher, and curator who explores concepts as racism, colonialism, inclusion, diversity, and others related to them using multiple formats (film, collage, installation, sculpture, founded objects) in public and private spaces. Her work allows the viewers to question not only the society as their selves to battle xenophobia and racism challenging narratives behind mainstream images, phrases and other elements with her own background and narrative as a migrant person.

A notable example of her work is Business as Usual (2020), because she appropriates a phrase that came from the business area, which means to keep on going despite of the circumstances and used it to question how the institutions and society claims being inclusive and diverse but in reality, they are not, or they are in a lukewarm and politically convenient way (Source: https://www.albertawhittle.com/business-as-usual.html).

(Images: Alberta Witthle website)

Using collage technique, Whittle juxtaposes images of her own body, her culture, and stereotypes about these to challenge the narrative of power in which inclusion is talked about, yet it is only done from a comfortable point of view that does not upset people not directly affected by colonialism and racism.


With all the above in mind I made a new brainstorming to explore new possible topics for project 2:

Witches: what is said about them in the past? What is said about them now? Who works for those narratives? How have been broken these narratives and by who? What can I say about this topic? 

Objects from another continents and civilizations in the Museum Collections: Why all these objects are there? What is said about them? Whats the official story about them and what is Hidden? Are shown through an stereotypical view? How they got these objects? Were collected? Were stolen? What can I say about this topic?