“Reenactments” installation by Claudia Joskowicz at Centro Cultural Santa Cruz, Bolivia, 2012
Vallegrande, 1967 (2008)
Vallegrande, 1967 is one in a trilogy of videos based on events in Bolivian history and their effect on the country’s mytho-historic landscape.
Vallegrande, 1967 reenacts the display of guerrilla combatant Che Guevara’s corpse for the media after his assassination by the Bolivian army in La Higuera in 1967. The display of his mutilated corpse for journalists and selected spectators by the Bolivian military was meant to serve as proof of the guerrilla’s demise before his remains were buried in a secret, unmarked grave. The Christ-like figure of the posthumous Che lying on a concrete slab in the laundry room of the Nuestra Señora de Malta hospital in Vallegrande was filmed as a slow moving tracking-in shot in the same laundry room where Guevara’s body was laid. The small building, now covered in memorial graffiti written by Che admirers has become one of the most venerated stops on the “Che tourist path” and thus, part of the Che myth.
Drawn and Quartered (2008)
Drawn and Quartered is a recreation of a diorama on permanent exhibition at the Museo Costumbrista in La Paz, Bolivia that depicts the execution of Tupac Katari, a leader in the rebellions of indigenous people in Bolivia who was executed by the Spanish colonialists in 1781. Shot as a slow moving tracking shot, the camera moves across Plaza Alonso de Mendoza in La Paz and happens upon the execution. The urban fabric, and the execution’s effect upon it, are manipulated by a limited set of images which occupy the camera and reorganize the landscape.
Round and Round and Consumed by Fire (2009)
Round and Round and Consumed by Fire is one in a trilogy of videos based on events in Bolivian history and their effect on the country’s mytho-historic landscape.
Round and Round and Consumed By Fire is a reenactment of the shootout and subsequent death of Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, nineteenth century American outlaws and leaders of the Hole-in-the-Wall Gang. Historians believe that Butch and the Sundance Kid died in a shoot-out in San Vicente, Bolivia, a town in southern Bolivia where they had fled after robbing the payroll of the Aramayo Mining Co. The story was fictionalized in the 1969 film “Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid,” a film only loosely based on historical fact that popularized the legends of Butch and Sundance. Shot as a slow moving circular tracking shot, the camera tracks a circle around the entire periphery of a generic small Bolivian town main street during the gun fight. Only loosely based on the film mentioned above, this recreation of its final scene results in a diluted rendering of what may have been the original shoot out, if it, in fact, ever happened.