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Strength , interdisciplinary performance, 2005

emilio santeban
Latin American performance artist

Arte de performance, arte da performance, performance art, Lima Peru Sudamérica América do Sul South America.

Interdisciplinary performance project, Santa Cruz de la Sierra, 2005.


For fifteen days I made  video interviews with the Santa Cruz parliamentarians and citizens who walk through the city's Main Square, where the Prefecture (the departmental government), the Parliamentary Brigade (central office of the parliamentarians representing the Department of Santa Cruz) are located,  local of the citizen movement that articulates the main autonomist initiatives of Santa Cruz and the House of Culture of Santa Cruz, space in which I carried out the installation-action.  These interviews - which dealt with the problem of Santa Cruz autonomy, racism, economic interests and other aspects related to said problem - were edited on video so that only the answers to the questions asked could be seen and heard grouped in sequence ( ordering by questions and not by interviewee).


On two televisions,  arranged facing each other on the furthest ends of a long table,  The resulting video was placed, out of phase in time between both televisions and at very high volume.

Under the table, as a rug and designated territory,  stripes representing the Bolivian flag on one side and the Santa Cruz de la Sierra flag on the other, and on said carpet, sitting opposite each other, two volunteers who stare into each other's eyes, without speaking to each other, for two days in full days. six hours each day.


Both volunteers, one from La Paz ("colla") and the other from Santa Cruz ("camba"), were instructed that they could not withdraw, go to the bathroom, eat, stand up, speak, or take any other action than to look at each other. their eyes unless they started an exchange of ideas regarding the subjects displayed on the televisions.  They chose to remain immobile and mute during the twelve hours that have elapsed over two days.


The action refers both to the forces that unite Bolivia into a single republic, as well as to those forces that separate them, to the positive forces that required  be conspired to set in motion the harmonious and sustainable development of their peoples, and the negative forces that maintain tension and inaction.


Shortly after this performance, the electoral process took place that led to the first election of the indigenous Evo Morales as President of the Republic of Bolivia.

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