Memorias del subdesarrollo, Museo Jumex. Julieta González. Animales

In the exhibition Memories of Underdevelopment, tropical animals inhabit and participate in some of the works. To guarantee their wellbeing and comfort during their stay, the staff of Museo Jumex, in collaboration with Blau Life and the Comunidad Mexicana de Ornicultores (OMX), is watching over them. These organizations trained members of our staff for the proper care of the different species, in addition to their caretakers visiting them periodically to ensure their safety and comfort at all times.

Juan Downey. Anaconda, Map of Chile, 1973

Monty, a Burmese python, inhabits the work by Juan Downey titled Anaconda, Map of Chile. Snakes of this species are among the largest in the world. They are solitary animals that can lie still for many days. Monty was born in captivity and lives at Acuario Inbursa, and will return to her caretakers following this exhibition.

How do we take care of her?
The environment complies with the temperature and humidity factors required by her species. Her caretakers feed her and clean her space.

Why is it important that she participates in the work?
In this piece Monty alludes to the Anaconda Copper Mining Company in Chile. Among the shareholders of this mining company in the United States were members of the Rockefeller family, whose interests were affected by the nationalization of copper proclaimed in 1971 by President Salvador Allende. This piece has been recreated with different species of snakes, including anacondas, pythons and boas. The snake is allowed to slither freely over a drawing of Chile’s territory, in which one can see the Spanish conquistador Pedro de Valdivia founding the city of Santiago. Monty moves across Chile’s borders, evoking the international companies and the neo-colonial interests that dominated Chilean politics during this period.

Common name: Burmese python Scientific name: Python molurus bivittatus

León Ferrari. Cage with Birds from the series Excrements, 2004–2008
The work by León Ferrari is inhabited by canaries of two breeds: The Red Mosaic and Yellow Canary. These birds are a part of the Comunidad Mexicana de Ornicultores (OMX) and will return to their caretakers following this exhibition.

How to identify them?
The Red Mosaic can be distinguished from the Yellow Canary by its plumage with reddish tones on the head, on the shoulders, and the chest.

How do we take care of them?
Every day the trained staff of Museo Jumex provides the canaries with food according to a healthy diet and fresh water, both for them to drink and take a bath. In addition our staff members interact with the canaries since they are domestic animals accustomed to human presence.

Why is it important that they participate in the work?
In Cage with Birds, the canaries are making a collage with their excrement on The Last Judgement. According to León Ferrari, the canaries “deposit an opinion” on the reproductions of hell painted by great artists of the West: El Bosco, Fra Angelico and Giotto.

Common name: Canary
Scientific name: Serinus canaria domestica

Hélio Oiticica. Tropicália, 1966–1967
This installation by Hélio Oiticica can be experienced along the gravel path or from the perimeter. It is inhabited by Lory and Pilla, two yellow-headed parrots, a species native to Latin America.

How do we take care of them?
Every day our staff members provide them with food and fresh water according to a healthy diet. As parrots are a sociable species and enjoy the company of humans, the staff interacts with them. Lory and Pilla are sisters and have always lived together, so they accompany each other everywhere they go. Their aviary is surrounded by plants and equipped with toys for their entertainment, as well as a nest for them to take shelter if they so wish.

Why is it important that they participate in the work?
Surrounded by plants and sand, the parrots that participate in the installation of Hélio Oiticica help to evoke a tropical environment inside the room. The artist sought to bring into the museum forms of Brazilian popular culture, such as samba and favela architecture, so these birds invite you to imagine the atmosphere in the streets of Rio de Janeiro.