Trace Memories: Reading Response

Denise Birkhofer toggles between universal themes of violence and specific individual experiences in his discussion artist Doris Salcedo. Doris Salcedo responds directly to the violence in her native Colombian culture. Birkhofer suggest Salcedo uses clothing and objects to represent individuals. Furniture stands in as a narrative while clothing acquired from victims’ families provide an intimate experience.

Trace Memories discusses four examples of Salcedo’s work optimizing the metaphor between objects and people. In Untitled, new white shirts represent 40 banana plantation workers after their horrific massacre. Organization of the generic materials suggests the universal activity of counting death tolls. Atrabiliarios buried shoes donated by individual families and from hospitals in Bogototá under a thin bladder membrane. The membrane separates the view from the victim creating the unclarity of memory. In later versions of La Casa Viuda, Salcedo mends furniture with human remains, such as bone and skin. Although inspired by specific events that the artist feels a responsibility to publicly mourn, Salcedo creates a universal understanding of victimization.

Screen Shot 2017-04-12 at 6.03.44 PM

Untitled 1989-1993

Screen Shot 2017-04-12 at 6.04.32 PM

Atrabiliarios 1989-1991

Screen Shot 2017-04-12 at 6.05.34 PM

La Casa Viuda II 1992-1994

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s