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The exhibition aims to provide specific illumination of each of four major artists on the Colombian stage, each of them having constructed a specific oeuvre broadly examining our relationship to photographic images. Juan Manuel Echavarría (Medellin, 1947), José Alejandro Restrepo (Bogota, 1959), Miguel Ángel Rojas (Bogota, 1946) and Oscar Muñoz (Popayan, 1951) come from generations who have experienced different stages of an uninterrupted civil war. While their work cannot be reduced to this common issue, this global creative context requires emphasis.
The exhibition is organised as a succession of four sections, one per artist. This choice of presenting a smaller selection of artists has enabled each one to be given a genuine space and to construct an overall theme conveyed by the comparison of their respective works. The exhibition enables the viewer to understand the works, highlighting their plastic qualities, particularly in the correspondence of the works between photographic image, narrative, filmed image and the spoken word. Despite profoundly different artistic practices, these four artists underline in their works the fluidity of the passage between film and photography, and provide an in-depth interrogation of the unstable status of these images.
This comparison results in recurring figures and problems that echo each other. The figure of the distanced witness recurs in a wide variety of forms in several works which play with the ductility of the image and even its materiality. The memorial function of the image is here questioned, disassembled and demonstrated, reactivated in forms that blur the traditional frontiers between media. This freedom to reuse and to pass from one form to another, far from being employed simply to demonstrate the photographer's virtuosity, is used rather to expand the consideration of the images.
© Quai Branly Museum.