Memories of Underdevelopment examines a major paradigm shift in culture and the visual arts, characterized by the articulation of a counter-narrative to the rhetoric of developmentalism that resulted in early instances of decolonial thought in the artistic practices produced in the region between the early 1960s and the mid-1980s.
During this period intellectuals and artists throughout the region echoed the critiques coming from the field of political economy, questioning imposed cultural and aesthetic models, marking a critical distance from the canon and formal vocabulary of the modern, reclaiming local forms of knowledge as well as popular and vernacular expressions, and recognizing the value of cultural manifestations born out of conditions of material poverty. Many artists, some even formerly affiliated to the modernist avant-gardes in their respective countries, established a dialogic relation to these cultural forms, engaging in a structural commitment to their incorporation into their own avant-garde practices and generating forms of collectivization of experience that fostered social awareness through spatial modes of perception and participation.
Memories of Underdevelopment gathers approximately 400 objects from more than 50 artists working in eight countries throughout Latin America. The exhibition presents works from: 3 Nós 3, Benjamin Abrahão, Lola Alvarez Bravo, Joaquim Pedro de Andrade, Luis Arias Vera, Artur Barrio, Jacques Bedel, Fernando "Coco" Bedoya, Lina Bo Bardi, Paulo Bruscky, Athos Bulcão, Teresa Burga, Ivan Cardoso, Antonio Caro, Manuel Casanueva, Elda Cerrato, Victor Hugo Codocedo, Centro de Arte y Comunicación (CAyC), Colectivo de Acciones de Arte (CADA), Caravana Farkas, Guillermo Deisler, Antonio Dias, Eugenio Dittborn, Juraci Dórea, Juan Downey, Diamela Eltit, Eugenio Espinoza, Escuela de Arte Popular / Universidad Autónoma de Puebla, Thomaz Farkas, León Ferrari, Paulo Freire, Frente Mexicano de Grupos Trabajadores de la Cultura, Marcel Gautherot, Anna Bella Geiger, Rubens Gerchman, Octavio Getino y Fernando Solanas, Carlos Ginzburg, Beatriz Gonzalez, Victor Grippo, Juan Guzmán, Graciela Gutiérrez Marx, Grupo Mira, Eduardo Hernández, Leon Hirszman, E.P.S. Huayco, Alfredo Jaar, Leandro Katz, Gastão Magalhães, Antonio Manuel, Jonier Marín, Leo Matiz, Carlos Mayolo y Luis Ospina, Cildo Meireles, No Grupo, Hélio Oiticica, Dámaso Ogaz, Clemente Padín, Lygia Pape, Catalina Parra, Luis Pazos, Claudio Perna, Alfredo Portillos, Norberto Puzzolo, Glauber Rocha, Osvaldo Romberg, Jesús Ruiz Durand, Armando Salas Portugal, Peter Scheier, Falves Silva, Regina Silveira, Taller 4 Rojo, Cecilia Vicuña, Edgardo Antonio Vigo, Horacio Zabala.
Exhibition conceived and organized by Julieta González, Artistic Director, Museo Jumex, with the collaboration at MCASD of Kathryn Kanjo, Sharon Lerner, Jacopo Crivelli Visconti, Anthony Graham, and Jenna Jacobs.
Coordinated at Museo Jumex, by Maria Emilia Fernández, Curatorial Assistant.
Memories of Underdevelopment: Art and the Decolonial Turn in Latin America, 1960-1985 is co-organized by the Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego and Museo Jumex, and Museo de Arte de Lima. Lead support was provided through grants from the Getty Foundation. Additional support was provided through a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts. This project has received generous underwriting support from Maryanne and Irwin Pfister and the LLWW Foundation.