Frontiers between countries have often been a source of conflict, especially when on one side of the border people have a house, a job and plenty to eat, while on the other there is no work and families can’t meet their basic requirements. Such is the situation between the United States and Mexico, an extensive border in the middle of the desert. The Belgian artist Chantal Akerman thought that if she made a film explaining what people are like and how they live on either side of the border, maybe things could begin to change. So, after making the film, she installed a giant screen right next to the line separating the two countries, near the towns of Agua Prieta and Douglas. At night, the inhabitants of both towns would watch the film and realise that, despite their differences, they shared the same landscape: the desert. So perhaps they were not so different after all. She called the work A Voice in the Desert.

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