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“CENOTAPH CONSTRUCTION” (2014/2018) [CONSTRUCCIÓN DE UN CENOTAFIO] Records of images and notes of testimonies

In the winter of 2014 I accompanied a woman to look for the place where her father was killed in the bush of Tucumán (in the north of Argentina). From that search to build a mark to remember a guerrilla man (until today disappeared) I met a former commander of the Ejército Revolucionario del Pueblo (ERP), whom I accompanied in his last months of life. After his death I joined a research group that traced the history of the Compañía de Monte "Ramón Rosa Jiménez", and later I was part of the production of the Festival del Monte Tucumano, which took place at the end of 2015 in the town of Santa Lucía, Tucumán. In the course of those months, I met a group of people who told me a hidden part - for me and a large part of my generation (those born in the 1980s) - of the history of Tucumán and Argentina in the decades of the 60s and 70s of the twentieth century. This history is narrated by me in multiple ways.

  • “BY HEART” (2017/2021) [DECIR DE MEMORIA]
  • Sound art piece consisting of two audio recordings.
  • Salon Immateriel Art-O-Rama 2021

The artist recites by heart the testimonies of two siblings from a small sugar-producing town in Tucumán, a province in the north of Argentina. Ramón and Marta Castellano. These testimonies are about their experiences concerning the state terrorism they suffered in the 1970s. These accounts were registered by the anthropologist Daniela Domínguez in 2014. Andrea was involved with the siblings for several years, supporting them as an activist for the Remembrance for Truth and Justice. In one of the recordings, her voice repeats a fragment of the script of the movie 'El camino hacia la muerte del Viejo Reales', shot by the filmmaker from Tucumán Gerardo Vallejos at the end of 1960, in the town where Marta and Ramon used to live. In the other recording, she reads fragments of her testimony about how she heard about the rural guerrilla history of Tucumán through its survivors, who belonged to the People's Revolutionary Army (ERP). They were the daughter of a disappeared guerrilla man and the Castellano siblings.

  • Images and notes archive.

For several years I collected images created by me and appropriated and rehearsed different deployments of that archive seeking to make "manifestations" of images from my life experience. This work is a "living" work, which changes its form as time goes by (as all forms change with time), it receives contributions from many people; all its parts are related to each other although the relationship is not always clear. The precariousness in it is a situation, but it is also a decision. This accumulating, classifying, selecting and showing can be a way of sharing presence, also a collection of astonishments that one tries to catch or translate into images and words to be shared (and perhaps to rest from loneliness), and edited, as one edits one's own memory. I collect stories linked to collective resistance, memories that (re)configure future horizons and create meanings, anecdotes that show the different forms that political imagination takes, testimonial narratives of people who are part of the pueblos originarios of the Gran Chaco Americano. I investigate different notions of "territory" in different voices, from different strategies. Sometimes I do it as a teacher, sometimes as a communicator or as an activist without necessarily exposing what I find in my actions, tours, extended residences in rural areas, in the field of art. This last time I repeat stories that other people transmit to me and I learn them by heart.

Andrei Fernandez was born in 1983 in southern Argentina. She is an artist, a curator, and a cultural promoter. She studied Fine Arts and Social and Political Anthropology. She belonged to different independent groups of artists from the north of Argentina, where she managed exhibitions, research and training projects on visual arts. She works as a workshop coordinator and instructor, territorial technician, and as an activist involved in processes of communication of collective memory with farmers and indigenous organizations from the northwest part of Argentina. She exhibited as a visual artist in different cities of Argentina, Chile, and Cuba. She curated many exhibitions, among which stands out: 'The Listening and the Winds. Narratives and Inscription of the Gran Chaco', in ifa- Galerie of Berlin and the Museo Provincial de Bellas Artes Lola Mora of Salta within the third edition of BIENALSUR (2021).