Category Archives: Project Proposals

Final Proposal – Black Banana Programming: UNPACKED


Final Deliverable

Black Banana Programming: UNPACKED

5 day lead time

The Plan: Reflect and share experience from start to finish.

  1. determining program
  2. identifying participants
  3. assessing needs for program
  4. publicizing program
  5. documenting program
  6. archiving – web development

Maira and I will discuss our process, challenges, and hopes for the future of Black Banana.

We will also show a completed video which documents the Black Banana Programming event.

***In addition, I will provide a final reflection essay which covers this experience, as well as my views on curating, contemporary art, race, identity and social inclusion in Latin America.


Final Proposal

Art, Conflict, & Technology

“If history is the disciplined construction of collective memory, art can be the undisciplined expression of collective dreams” Dr Tristram Riley-Smith on why art should matter to policy-makers.

For my final deliverable for this class I would like to write an essay/research paper that would explore Art, Conflict and Technology. I envision this final project to be a

a critical comparative essay about how different types of DIY art invasions (augmented reality being one of these) and invasions of space (like the performance art we have been exposed to this semester) can be used and are used as forms of protest and social activism.

I would also want to further look at how digital interventions contribute and can be employed, while also considering the digital divide and what this mean in terms of artistic interventions. One of the main questions that I want to explore in my paper is how to build peace or seek resolution/transformation from historical conflicts (ie historic memory) through technology while considering the question “by whom, for whom?” that is inherent in the conversation surrounding technology.

This essay would be a way for me to continue to explore where art, personal narrative and public space intersect, which is a personal interest of mine, as well is technology and narrative. This would also be a reflexive paper because in many ways our exhibit was in some aspects a DIY show given our transnational collaboration with curators and artists and it also made use of technology in its production of the actual physical pieces, the organization of the show, the website, our public programming (hosted online), and our digital archive.

Some Resources in addition to Class Texts

Reflections & End of Semester Proposals

The skillset that is most new to me this semester is the curatorial skillset.  Where I found myself struggling the most so far this semester was distinguishing the line between artist and/or curator and authorship, in particular the role that the curator plays in that authorship.  For our midterm presentation I felt uncomfortable putting words in the artist’s mouth.  This feeling eventually assuaged when we were able to communicate directly with the artist and get her feedback (we spoke most directly with Yasmin).  This interaction with the artist made me realize that these relationships with artists and interpersonal skills are essential to the curator being able to do their job correctly.  This seems obvious, but experiencing it firsthand allowed me to learn about the intricacies that curating demands.  I am excited to see how this process develops this semester on such a tight timeline.

This uncomfortableness is already something that has begun to change and I hope that by the end of the semester I will feel more comfortable stepping into a curatorial role  with more confidence.  I believe that more exposure, firsthand experience and education about the art of curating will eventually get me closer and this goal will be attained come May.  One of the best ways for me to do this is by focusing on the themes of memory (both historical and personal), storytelling and narrative which I feel most drawn to in this course and investing in projects like El olvido que no sabe es olvido and Me eschuchas(Can you hear me)? which deal directly with this topic.

Outside of this class I have been extremely interested in studying augmented reality as a medium.  In particular, I have been interested in personally using augmented reality to bring memories and wishes to the visible realm through virtual objects. This semester I am working on a project for another class where I am writing a fictional first person story that is augmented in order to explore memory.  In this story I will reveal my overarching narrative, to be somewhat revisionist.  I am hoping to use narrative and augmented reality to explore the important things that we forget to say, that we may or may not realize we aren’t saying when we tell stories.

By the end of the semester I think I would like to write a critical comparative essay about how different types of DIY art invasions (augmented reality being one of these) and invasions of space (like the performance art we have been exposed to this semester) can be used and are used as forms of protest and social activism.  I would also want to further look at how digital interventions contribute and can be employed, while also considering the digital divide and what this mean in terms of artistic interventions. This essay would be a way for me to continue to explore where art, personal narrative and public space intersect.

Another idea that I had for a media piece about Guatemala Despues would be augmenting our own exhibit.  When we spoke with Radhika and Lydia last week, they mentioned that a critical contextual piece, and one of the more challenging aspects of our exhibit, would be to make connections to the United State’s complicity in the Guatemalan Genocide and silenced history, and our ability stateside to be pretty wholly oblivious to this.

I think I would like to create a piece that would further reveal this. Using AR to do this would be powerful in the context if the NY exhibit because of the medium’s nature as well as the concept of not only Guatemala’s silencing of the past, but how the US helped silence this past.  Many times DIY tactics and DIY art invasions are employed as subversive tactics.  In the case of our exhibit, which is already seeking to subvert historic memory in the context of Guatemala it would be used to further reveal how it is that we could have so easily silenced the past and ways that we can open up this particular dialogue regarding the US.

Update on My Research

For quite a while I chose the topic of enforced disappearance with focus on the psychosocial aspect of Guatemala. Within this focus, I already contacted my source, a Guatemalan activist who also happens to be a director of de La Liga Guatemalteca de Higiene Mental. Since it hasn’t come into a fruitful result yet, I moved on to a new topic starting last week, thanks to a good discussion with Nitin and Julian. My new topic is now: Visual Intervention with focus on the work of Daniel Hernández-Salazar’s Angels in public places. The plan is interviewing him while also investigating and learning about his particular techniques in intervening public places. I actually also had a plan to interview and investigate the technique that HIJOS employed in their project, Empapaladas. However, my lack of knowledge in Spanish language becomes my disadvantage since many literatures about this is in Spanish so my focus now is in Daniel’s work.

Quantum Memory: Putting everything on paper

After doing some further reading, I finally felt prepared enough to move forward with my project.

I put my ideas on paper, in order to have a clearer view regarding which the next steps should be.


Now I know I have three tasks in which I have to work on simultaneously:

1) Getting in touch with the artists with whom I would like to collaborate in order to share our thoughts and to comment on each other’s proposal. Also share the readings that could be relevant to both projects.

2)  Determine what the content of the piece is going to be, by defining who’s memories are going to function as the base for the project. What is the criteria? What is the question that will trigger these memories? In which format are they (the memories) going to be collected?

3) To work on the coding and interface design phases of the project. Get together with web designers and programmers in order to understand my options and make an informed decision in this regard.

I would very much appreciate if you could share with me your suggestions and feedback during our next class!

UPDATE: On Enforced Disappearance (Project Proposal)

On the project:

Daniela has helped me translate my email into Spanish to the person I’d like to interview (Marco, the director of La Liga Guatemalteca de Higiene Mental, Guatemala) and I have sent it again to Marco. Still no reply, I have asked Pablo (P Jose Ramirez) to help me with this since it turned out Marco is his Facebook friend, although Pablo doesn’t know him. I do hope that it will turn out well and I will wait until next week for Marco’s answer. If there’s still no result, I will continue by researching on the data of the Enforced Disappearance in Latin America in general and use this to explore (I haven’t decided yet in what way –> historically or performatively or poetically) the representation and the bodies of the disappeared. I plan to title it “Missing Persons.”

Currently happened in relation with this topic:

Furthermore, what has happened to 43 missing students of Ayotzinapa, Mexico just a month ago is a terrible truth that shows how the practice of forced disappearance is still employed in Latin America as a tactic of political repression.


The Latin American Disappeared and Repeating History in Mexico.

Ayotzinapa Demands Justice One Month After the Disappearances



Project Proposal working with Yasmin Hage (US and Guatemalan Relations & Arts)

Upon discussing my initial project proposal that focused on the work behind the scenes in showcasing arts namely the economy of it and the outreach and public engagement aspect I find myself taking these ares of emphasis and tailoring it around the “US and Guatemalan relations” perceptions. I am interested in working closely with Artist Yasmin Hage and sharing with her my research findings on how I perceive one of the elements of this relationship. In this case my research is revolved around a heated debate about how American Corporations rely on sweat shops/labour in Guatemala.

The institute for global labour and human right have put together a detailed report about Alianza Sweatshops that is believed to serve American Corporations. According to research these Corporations owe $6 million to Guatemalan workers.  The interesting twist in this story is that on one hand there is the American Corporate Abuse to workers in Guatemala and on the other hand there is the American Arm of Institute For Global Labour & Human Rights that is based in Pittsburgh that is exposing the truth bringing issues to the surface to be rectified.  This is an area where Social justice is challenged ! I do have few  very ideas to share with Yasmin in displaying this relationship artistically , I am very curious to see what she will offer to such an exhibition of US Vs Guatemalan relations.





Looking for Blackness | Update

I’ve connected with Mai Elka Prado Gil who is the co-founder of The Afro Latino Project. It’s an organization that has as mission to serve as a digital resource center and archive for the historical and material documentation and preservation of the cultures, histories and experiences of Afrodescendant people in the Americas and the Caribbean. We are planning to get together to talk further about the ways she and her partner, Amilcar Maceo Priestley can help in developing the project, Looking For Blackness. My hope is that it will be a seamless addition to the overall Guatemala project. Mai Elka mentioned that they are connected to the Garifuna and have collaborated on other projects. Right now I’m looking at developing an installation of video, photography and live performance. Included will be a panel discussion on race, art and curation in Guatemala/Latin America. Taking a cue from Julian, who suggested connecting with AfroLatinos here in New York, we can draw out the connections between the American experience and that of Latin America, with regards to questions of racism, curation of art and general access or cultural inclusion. I also have a connect in Belize that I am exploring.