(April 3 – May 5, 2008)

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Lambda Print, 126 x 126 cm

ENLACE ARTE CONTEMPORÁNEO Gallery (Av. Pardo y Aliaga 676, San Isidro) announces the opening of the exhibition IF THERE IS NO GREAT BEYOND, next Thursday, April 3, at 7.30 p.m. Racism is one of the endemic ills that plague our society. This, unfortunately, is nothing new, though the personal perspective from which the photographic lens of the Colectivo MR approaches it is, situating the victim of racism in the “exclusive” space of the racist. The Colectivo MR is made up of the prestigious Peruvian photographer Marina García Burgos and the renowned Spanish art historian and critic Ricardo Ramón Jarne, who joined forces to work on social art, bereft of political restraints or party lines. Their goal is to use a contemporary aesthetic to pose questions and foster a cultural dialogue. This exhibition is made up of a series of ten color photographs, each measuring 170 x 170 cm. With these images, MR subtly makes us aware that racism still exists, despite advances made in social justice. This racism, with its clear ties to matters of skin color and poverty, will gradually be stripped of these conditioning factors due to the economic wellbeing that has come with development and the growth of the middle class in the neighborhoods on the outskirts of Lima, making these areas some of the fastest-growing zones in the Americas. Because of this, these images, created and idealized by MR, will become everyday sights in the near future. As such, they may be viewed as something like postcards from the future. Peruvian-ness, taken with all its facets and differences, is wealth. Sooner or later, integration—which is now a constant trend—will make society into a cosmopolitan set of positive consequences. The distance between the unfamiliar and the quotidian is growing shorter, and this is something that MR lays bare for us on the wall. In the United States, African Americans have gone from being unable to use the same bathrooms as whites to being presidential candidates. Racism is on the path to extinction. Let’s not get left behind. To speak of this series as a contemporary remake of Chambi may not be far from the truth. Where Chambi brought the llama into his photography studio and placed it before a backdrop featuring a country landscape, MR takes a family of campesinos from the highlands and situates them in a house typical of Lima’s upper crust. The backdrops in Chambi’s studio were unreal, while the set in which MR exhibits the family is unreal to the subjects themselves. Family photos were shot in sets taken out of context. The family members dressed up in their Sunday best, washing and carefully grooming themselves in preparation for their immortalization in the photo. It was a big party… The exhibition catalogue, designed by Arturo Higa and Meche Correa, will include an interesting article by Rafael Doctor, Director of the Museo de Arte Contemporáneo de Castilla y León (MUSAC), the most renowned photography specialist in Spain and the man responsible for creating the Museo Nacional de Fotografía. The exhibition texts will be written by the respected Peruvian psychoanalyst Jorge Bruce, as well as the author Santiago Roncagliolo, winner of the 2006 Premio Alfaguara de Novela. The exhibition may be viewed through November 8, from Monday through Saturday, 11:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. No entry fee.