From February 5th to April 24th 2015
The Unruly Landscapes’ exhibition brings together a series of projects that show in a human, sensitive and poetic way difficult realities exploring forced displacement and the phenomenon of migration through violence, deshumanization and personal stories. Marcos Ávila Forero becomes witness and accomplice of these “micro-stories”, confronting the geographical and ideological borders that exist today.
The need to analyse aspects of the past and the present from memory, to reclaim the local and interest in otherness and postmodern anthropology leads us to an ethnographic turn. This brings us into the presence of a new paradigm of artist: “the artist as ethnographer” (a concept coined by the theorist Hal Foster in the mid-nineties), an artistic practice interested not only in economic or social issues, but also in identity and cultural matters. We could say that Marcos Ávila Forero moves in this terrain — whose current tendency incorporates complicity as a modus operandi — appealing to an auto-ethnography that seeks to reclaim the history of his home country, Colombia, and that of other contexts with which he works, moving beyond physical and territorial borders, analyzing forced displacement and the phenomenon of migration. His work is constructed out of the question: How do humans, objects and ideas travel and how are they transformed? A constant displacement that shows us what lies beyond the borders we know, an approach to the reality of the Other.
The projects included in Unruly Landscapes seem to evoke an "off-screen”: a story, a journey, a trip, or an encounter between the artist and the families, artisans, communities, towns, villages; in short, the human being is the centre of his work, becoming the main character and carrying an embodied story, the story of an escape, an armed conflict, a search for a new path. We could talk about "micro-stories" that seek not so much to proof anything as to explore human migration through violence, dehumanization and personal stories, based on local issues but ultimately seeking the global dimension.
In all his works, Marcos Avila Forero shows difficult and harsh realities in a human, sensitive and poetic way, becoming a witness and an accomplice to these stories, confronting the geographical and ideological borders that exist today. Imperceptible boundaries that separate the city from the mountain, the native from the foreigner, the clandestine from the legal, poverty from wealth, tradition from modernity. The works exhibited at ADN Galería stand out for representing everyday life experiences conceived as performance, which the artist understands as alternative forms of history and memory that convey local knowledge of reality beyond borders, times and places.