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July - September 2019
Direction: Dagmara Wyskiel
Curatorial Concept: Destiny
Exhibitions, residencies, workshops & debates
SACO8 - Destiny
The 8th edition of SACO builds imaginary exhibition spaces where contemporary art unfolds as an utopia in the middle of the world's driest desert. Between July and September 2019, more than 40 artists from 15 different countries participate in the festival in process of being turned into a Biennial, that takes place in the region of Antofagasta. The transformation of schools, universities, anthropological sites and museums into spaces of contemporary art is the central idea that nourishes the exhibitions of SACO.
Under the curatorial concept Destiny , and from different perspectives (both foreign and local), the exhibitions of the Festival seek to address the future that awaits humanity through the central themes that surround the territory of the Atacama Desert: from the abominable impact of mining that reverberates at a territorial and socio-cultural level, to the infinite possibilities offered by the most pristine sky in the world.
"In times of the Western crisis of religions, of the generalized discredit of rulers, of the rebirth of the weeds of extremism and the disillusionment of instant recipes, it seems that the compass is not updating. The system crashed. SACO8 proposes to understand the artist’s role as a subject capable of anticipating the present, pulling back the curtain and revealing something of what is envisioned there, so that we might have the chance to restart the compasses."
See the curatorial text >>
EXHITIBITIONS - museum without museum
Destiny is also the title of the most significant exhibition of the festival, at the heritage site Melbourne Clark Historic Quay in Antofagasta, an important milestone in the history of the country that is now resignified as a space for the presentation of works of contemporary art, seven projects chosen from 226 proposals from 32 different countries, a process carried out by the international jury members Sandino Scheidegger (Costa Rica-Switzerland), Sissi Hamann (Peru), Anne Brand (Guatemala-Switzerland), Andrés Vial and Dagmara Wyskiel (Poland-Chile).
Endless / Anna Uścińska de Rojas
Any Where / Marcos Temoche
Self Monument / Contrail / Yuga Hatta
Compound circle / Juan Carlos Guerrerosantos
The other side of the continent / Patricia Teles
Devenir (in blue) / Stephanie Williams
Topography of an uncertain future / Guillermo Anselmo Vezzosi
Circuit Antofagasta & San Pedro de Atacama
Museum without museum of SACO8 is the circuit of twelve exhibitions and venues distributed between Antofagasta and San Pedro de Atacama. For this version, it features works by more than 40 artists from fifteen countries, also including public and open spaces with actions such as Bloch of the Swiss duo Com&Com, and Miguel Braceli with students of the port of Mejillones. Museum without museum makes possible the connection with the production of recognized representatives of the contemporary art scene such as Fernando Sicco, Paz Errázuriz, Francis Naranjo & Carmen Caballero, Cristóbal León, among others.
Exhibition international call SACO8 Destino
Curatorship: Dagmara Wyskiel
Burying flags in the sea / Miguel Braceli + students
Memento mori / Paz Errázuriz
Curatorship: Coca González
Rabdomante, the utopia of water / Joaquín Fargas
Intimate (nothing lives forever)/ Francis Naranjo & Carmen Caballero
Chances / Fernando Sicco
We, the ancestors
Exhibitors: Carlos Olivares, Felipe Muñoz, Ángelo Álvarez Bon, Agustín Lobos, Claudia León, Jahir Jorquera, Jordán Plaza, Gabriel Navia
Curatorship: Cristóbal León
Diary of a search for the suprasensible / Natalia Pilo-Pais
Curatorship: Loreto González
Spectrum of Mars / Aldair Indra
Curatorship: Loreto González
Divert inertia — Reaching the Humboldt Current/ Ana Alenso
Curatorship: Loreto González
Can we decide on our destiny? Reflections of young people in contemporary art
Curatorship: Carolina Contreras
Intervention in public space:
Bloch / Com&Com: Johannes M. Hedinger y Marcus Gossolt
Activators: Rafaela Castro, Teatro en Tiempos de Guerra, Felipe Gallegos, Natalia Leal, Pedrokuzco & Patricia Díaz
EDUCATION - school without school
The SACO school without school is based on ideas that work from the absence to generate a proposal of activities and projects that brings art closer to the community. In its eighth version, the festival generated diverse pedagogical projects that deeply reached children and young people, but also adults, artists, researchers and any interested person. It provided key tools for the work of mediation in an area that is barely open to this concept; it prepared artists from the city in a workshop that allowed them to be part of an exhibition at SACO8; it worked with photographers from Bolivia, Chile, Peru and Argentina in the construction of stories through images; it developed contemporary art writing skills with journalists and others; it took diverse international artists to educational establishments and it worked with sensory experiences in the Atacama Desert.
RESIDENCIES - territory
Located in a privileged place, adjacent to the Pacific Ocean, the world's driest desert and the continent's most pristine skies, SACO invites its visitors to connect with a unique landscape that contextualizes the Festival's work. During 2019, various artists and curators took advantage of the unique characteristics of the landscape to inspire themselves and generate works and research. Through collaborative work, the artists were able to develop residencies in conjunction with institutions and experts specialized in diverse areas such as astronomy, mining and geology. The constant arrival of guests allows the cultural-territorial exchange towards and from Antofagasta to the rest of the world; and the relevance of the zone as focus of the visual arts that also attracts international projects that take advantage and activate in diverse ways the unique context of this Chilean region.
Festival de Arte Contemporáneo SACO is an initiative of Colectivo SE VENDE, Plataforma Móvil de Arte Contemporáneo which since 2004 has been established in Antofagasta as an agent of change and development of contemporary art.
The collective is directed by Dagmara Wyskiel (Poland) and Christian Núñez (Chile), who through a network management focused on dissemination and reflection on new artistic practices, have fostered various actions, both in the city and in nearby towns and in the desert, setting a precedent in contemporary art in the north of Chile.
The Instituto Superior Latinoamericano de Arte, ISLA, is the art residency center that administers the SACO Contemporary Art Festival. Located in the city of Antofagasta, just meters from the Pacific Ocean, it is a place designed for its guests - curators, artists, teachers, researchers, directors and the like - that goes beyond the limits of a space where to spend the night to become a focus of the local culture.
ISLA, as a place of creation and reflection of art, is built under a logic of environment and operation by and for artists, being a contribution in their creative work as well as being a facilitator of cultural networks with northern Chile and the world.
All artists, both national and international, as well as curators and researchers, who carry out some kind of project in Antofagasta with residence in ISLA, are committed to contributing to the development of the local scene, providing a training session free of charge in ISLA, in return for what they have learned.
From press information.
© Photos: Courtesy of SACO8. Cover photos are projects by Stephanie Williams, Miguel Braceli, Aldair Indra.