This course of work analyzes the narratives that appear on the borderline and in the hybrid spaces of the notion of identity, be it sexual, gender, race or nationality. Some of the works in the MACBA Collection and numerous events programmed by the Museum are representative of this focus, and explore the idea of the need to displace the hegemonic discourse on gender, race, and social class.

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Since the late eighties, Krzysztof Wodiczko has been creating artefacts for immigrants and homeless people that function as implements for survival and communication. In the nineties, influenced by a stay in Paris, he concentrated on new projects dealing with collectives of non-EU immigrants in Europe.

His Alien Staff gives a voice to the immigrant in order to teach citizens about their unique history. Exploiting the codes of ethnography and science fiction, Alien Staff demonstrates that changes in perception can produce more respectful attitudes towards others and encourage dialogue among individuals.

Esther Ferrer proposes a performance entitled Íntimo y personal (Intimate and Personal) which consists of the free measuring of the body. Using the measuring of the body as a metaphor for the impossibility of the objective, Esther Ferrer displaces the function of the artist and limits herself to act as a mere support for her own expiration.

This action can be carried out by anyone. Esther Ferrer gives instructions for executing the performance Íntimo y Personal [Intimate and Personal].

On May 12th, 2005 Angela Davis gave a conference and directed a seminar at the MACBA, which coincided with the presentation of the Spanish translation of her book “Women, Race, and Class,” considered a reference work within the field of feminist and racial studies.

Angela Davis, political activist and theoretician, used the occasion to outline a new feminist program based on a transversal alliance that criticizes the exclusions of race, gender, class, and sexuality, which Davis proposes as a project of collective emancipation.

In 1990, after a long period of resistance by various anti-apartheid groups, the National Party’s government, which upheld the ideologies of apartheid, took the first step towards abolishing its prohibition of the African National Congress party and other leftist organizations, and liberated Nelson Mandela after 27 years of imprisonment. Apartheid legislation was gradually substituted in statutory texts, and the first multi-racial elections took place in 1994 in which the African National Congress won by a landslide.

From 1999 to 2002, Goldblatt made a number of photographic series which became part of a larger project, Johannesburg Intersections, which showcases the new residential neighborhoods constructed for South African high society in the suburbs of Johannesburg, of great contrast to the poverty in nearby residential sectors.   In the Monte Casino from the North (2001) series, Goldblatt unites five photos to show us a panorama of the luxury complex which recreates a Tuscan Village.

One of Goldblatt’s series is focused on Dainfern, a luxury complex located in the outskirts of Johannesburg, situated very near the squatter’s settlement Zewenfontein. 

The piece explores the relationships between sexuality and economy, focusing on the male sexual workers of Barcelona at the time. It portrays the priorities of the sexual workers and their clients, relating the financial needs of the so-called “chaperos” [hustlers] to the individual needs of their clients. In a non-moralistic approach, it evokes the existent poetry and social tensions between these two groups of people that build the basis of the oldest profession in the world, but here devoted exclusively to the male homosexual field.

This new video installation, commissioned and produced by MACBA, was conceived and realized throughout the year of 2003 to integrate our exhibition Dias & Riedweg. Possibly Talking About the Same, at MACBA.

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Entering a museum starts at home or in a plane or in a tweet
Mark Wigley