Art from Saint Domingue diasporic echoes in the "continent of Black consciousness"

Dominican art is essentially diasporic. To the series of arguments presented in this text, concerning this distinctly Caribbean quality, I add the notion of a "double wound", as the anti-imperialist martyr and Dominican / Haitian poet Jacques Viau Renaud immortalized in the epic verses of Nothing remains as much as crying: 

 

I
At what precise moment did life separate from us, in what place, at what corner of the road?
On which of our journeys did love stop to say goodbye to us?
Nothing has been as hard as staying on your knees.
Nothing has hurt our heart as much as hanging the word bitterness from our lips.
Why did we walk this stretch devoid of shelter?
In which of our hands did the wind stop to break our veins and taste our blood?
Walk ... Where?
With what reason?
Walk with your heart tied,
the backs where the night accumulates,
Why? Where?
What has become of us?
We have traveled long roads.
We have sown our anguish
in the deepest place in our heart.
We are sorry for the mercy of some men!
Conquer new continents, who wants it?
Love new faces, who wants it?
Everything has been dragged by the rigals.
We did not know how to dialogue with the wind and leave,
sit on the trees sensing next game.
We settle on our blood
without remembering that in other hearts the same liquid burned
or it was poured out fighting and fighting.
What silences remain for us to travel?
What paths await our passage?
Any path inspires us the same anguish,
the same fear for life.
We mutilate ourselves by picking us up in us,
we became less humanity.
And now, alone, fought, we understand that the man we are
It's because others have been.

At the time of the premature death of Viau, visual artists, poets and intellectuals met in various groups, a circumstance still unparalleled in the history of Saint Domingue. The radical art legacy of the 1960 decade in the Dominican Republic, a direct result of the struggle against dictatorial rule and the North American invasion of 1965, was defined by the budding solidarity between the two towns of Saint Domingue. This solidarity found its concrete expression in the more than one hundred exiles of the Duvalier regime who fought alongside the Dominicans against this second American occupation.


In spite of the dictatorships, creators and intellectuals of Saint-Domingue they have maintained a long relationship with the main cultural scenes of Europe and the United States. For example, Celeste Woss and Gil studied in Paris and New York, in the Art Student`s League (1922), and two years later founded the first art school in the Dominican Republic, opened his studio with a selection of drawings and paintings, which became in that way the first individual exhibition of a female artist in the country. These diasporic extensions can be found on even earlier dates, as evidenced by the fact that Manhattan's first black settler (Juan Rodríguez, 1613) and Chicago's first black resident (Jean-Baptiste Point du Sable, 1788) were both Saint-Domingue.

In the following arguments, these connections of the diaspora with the United States, as well as with the African and European continent, will be analyzed from the perspective of the "double wound", in dialogue with the theoretical model of modernity / coloniality / decoloniality.

Insight into Otherness is the title of the first international exhibition I commissioned (1997, Art Center South Florida, Miami). In this the "universality of civilization" was questioned, showing that the artists of the Caribbean - in this particular case, of the Dominican Republic - they always had to "apply for a visa" to work on issues that did not pertain solely to the identity and / or representation policies. Another proof is found in the dozens of exhibitions whose existence revolves around their regional titles or subtitles: a clear example of the relentless separation of artistic traditions established by modernity. This phenomenon has also been labeled as the "Marco Polo Syndrome", highlighting the modern compulsion to "discover" the "other" continuously. At the same time, this was my way of dealing with the Dominican situation of "marginalization within marginalization" with respect to what I still call the "Cuban supremacist discourses" in the visual arts of the Hispanic Caribbean.

Modernity / coloniality / decoloniality addresses the same issues, pointing out that these are just different facets of the same reality: the coloniality of power, knowledge, feeling and being.

In her important essay Marcus Garvey and the continent of Black consciousness, Edna Brodber sums up her idea of ​​the closeness between the narratives of Negritude in the southern United States and their interconnections with the English-speaking Caribbean, thus contributing to the extensive Conceptions of Panafricanism from the Caribbean and the United States to Du Bois and Garvey: "That so many people on multiple occasions and coming from different areas feel spontaneously moved towards this behavior is what gives Pan-Africanism its essence. This feeling, common to so many, devised a whole continent of Black Consciousness that includes Africa and the geographic zones to which the Africans were thrown from the first days of slavery in the New World until the time of Garvey. "

Similarly, Brodber uses his novel Louisiana as a vehicle to poetically incorporate his contribution to the studies on the Black Diaspora and a history that is still pending to be recognized as such.

The way that some artists Saint Domingue's dealing with his Pan-Africanist legacy in the context of coloniality is enlightening and demands to be recognized in his specific duality within the Hispanic Caribbean. This "double wound" is the fertile ground in which my latest novel, Marassá and La Nada, is set, and has been part of my concerns since the 1997 year, along with research on the Black diaspora, migration, the borders of the Caribbean , colonial legacies and their interconnections in the African continent, the Caribbean and Europe, racialization, identity constructions, citizenship, Black Feminism and recently feminist epistemologies. Although the artists I have generally collaborated with a variety of media, I tend to prefer the image and performance, the works based on time, obviously influenced by my training as a classical dancer. My journalistic research work, as well as the literary and theoretical components of my curatorial praxis are also fundamental in this task. On the other hand, my dialogical approach to the theorization and creation of knowledge has been systematically dedicated to the discursive strategies of the artists with those who I have collaborated. Following this trajectory, my observations on the contributions of Eliú Almonte, Élodie Barthélemy, Teresa María Díaz Nerio, Nicolás Dumit Estévez, Sasha Huber, Charo Oquet and David Pérez-Karmadavis-, among others, resonate with their analytical and healing legacies in relationship with colonial, imperial and dual wounds.

Although I have always been interested in the analysis of my relationship with the artists -as an artist that I am-, it took me a long time to assume it. This delay could be explained by the contradictions inherent in the transmission of my own non-masculine perspective through the mechanism of legitimation of a masculine thought system; an endemic circumstance of the feminine condition.10 Being a Caribbean immigrant in Europe, as is my case, and looking for a way to experience art from my own Otherness is also a continuous challenge for my curatorial praxis. Current discourses and artistic practices are based on the notion of Western supremacy. Even when this notion is openly questioned, a critical treatment of the ideology and supremacist terminology that contaminates cultural studies is constantly threatened by how deep-rooted this view of the world is in thought processes and paradigms.

To this I must add that the attempts to decipher my own codes of ethics and aesthetics have been devoid of some important referents that at this point remain practically unknown in the Western context. Beyond these theoretical and perceptive limitations, my curatorial and theoretical work has always sought to be sufficiently "universal" to be addressed in various fields.

In 2001, Jorge Pineda invited me to write a short piece for the catalog of a project called Curador curado. As the title of the exhibition implied, the hypothesis was that since there were no "real" curators in the Dominican Republic, the artists they have seen forced become your own promoter @ s healer My response to his invitation was challenging. I had to demonstrate at all costs the scope and influence of my role in the local scene. After reading again the text I wrote for that exhibition, the need for some self-criticism of my self-centered position as a curator was clearly presented. But I'm not going to delve into that, since what matters are the changes in my own perception of curatorial praxis through my interaction with Nicolás Dumit Estévez, resident of the Bronx and born in Santiago de los Treinta Caballeros, in the Republic Dominican I'll start with a brief review of La papa móvil, our first project in common. I will proceed to present the theoretical components of our collaboration around what I call "dialogical aesthetics", continuing with my transition from curator to performance artist, which transformed my own perception about my work, giving me the freedom to express myself along with the making of consciousness through catharsis, in the strictest Aristotelian sense. All this allowed me to articulate this particular approach to the creation of embodied knowledge, theorizing through dialogue, in my fluctuating roles as a stage artist, 11 writer, journalist, curator and, finally, theoretical.

The mobile potato was an action that took place one afternoon in some overpopulated areas of Santo Domingo. Nicolás Dumit Estévez deconstructs a papal parade transmuting the Pope into a large potato, which he ceremoniously carried in a small transparent box placed on the back of his bicycle. In Spanish the same word is used for the potato (potato) and to name the Supreme Pontiff (Pope), in addition, the term Papa-Móvil is, of course, widely recognized as the name of the official car used by the Pope. The double spectrum of irony implicit in the title, as well as its potential to be easily understood by a local and international audience, attracted my attention.

When the artist sent me this proposal, I had recently moved to Germany, after a couple of years of intense work as an investigative journalist and cultural editor in Santo Domingo. Estevez and I had never seen each other; We began an intense exchange of emails that culminated in the successful production of La papa Móvil, as part of the First International Performance Show, an event developed within the III Santo Domingo International Theater Festival.

There are two emblematic images of this gift to my curatorial awareness. In the first, Estévez is putting on his shoes inside the Museum of Modern Art in Santo Domingo and preparing to start the procession. In the second, I'm taking off his shoes as part of undressing the Infant Jesus of Prague, in an artistic space in Berlin. In the first image I am playing the role of the observer-catalyst that documents the project: my baby, my curatorial production. In the second, I am the Mother-curator, who undresses the holy child-artist, after a period of three days of long and strenuous procession through Prague. As explained below, at that time I gave birth to myself as a performance artist.

My relationship with La Papa Móvil was influenced by the perspective of critical praxis -and, I add, curatorial- described by Julia Kristeva: "The function of the art critic [curator @] is then to give [art] meaning, to act as an interpreter . It follows from what I have been saying that I include the work of criticism in the contemporary aesthetic experience. Now more than ever, we are facing a necessary and inevitable osmosis between the execution of a work and its interpretation, which implies a redefinition of the distinction between the critic [curator @] and the artist ".

The distance between my role as a catalyst-healer of the aesthetic experience in La Papa Móvil and my empirical perception of the piece as part of its audience was filled with words, by intellectual preconditioning. This action refers to the reappropriation of gifts distributed during political campaigns, used to manipulate the daily struggle for the survival of the majority of l @ s dominican@s, who are willing to snatch any promise or inducement without any kind of compunction. The vouchers equivalent to five pounds of potatoes that could be exchanged that same night in front of the Museum of Modern Art in Santo Domingo were literally torn from the hands of the artist. The false and royal police officers who accompanied him had great difficulty in preserving their physical integrity. The penetrating commentary on populist tactics overlapped with the criticism of complicity between the religious hierarchy and the State, which is endemic in many Latin American countries and the United States. Caribbean. The incessant search for the limits between life and art -the main source of inspiration for the artist-, managed to transmit itself with unavoidable success.

In the six-year period between The Mobile Potato and In His Shoes, Estévez's work increasingly explores the different layers of meaning in the social mosaic of religious beliefs and rituals. Starting in 2003, he carried out a series of pilgrimages entitled For Art's Sake. This series was developed in collaboration with the Franklin Furnace Fund for Performance and the Lower Manhattan Cultural Council Residency Program. Evoking the pilgrimage of El Camino de Santiago de Compostela, in Spain, where devout Catholics travel to the reliquary of Santiago Apóstol, Estévez's secular turn took him on a pilgrimage to the museums of the New York metropolitan area, each time with a new penance –on her knees, walking backwards–, while spreading “the word” of art. This project raises multiple questions: art as ritual, the artist as an emblem of secular religion, the museum's place in the art world and the legitimizing role of the curator @. At the beginning of each of his pilgrimages, a curator @ gave him a special blessing. During one of his pilgrimages, I blessed him from my apartment in Berlin, an action that was broadcast in real time by telephone. Different contemporary thinkers and creators have been analyzing the same concerns about how art today plays the role previously occupied by religion or spirituality. Some, like Kristeva, advocate a new way of perceiving art: “[...] it is as if artists were inventing quasi-sacred spaces for us. Instead of asking us to contemplate the images, it is as if they were asking us to be in communion with other beings, or with being itself ”.


Others, like Linda Montano, are more direct; She affirms that her contribution to art is a "Catholic gift". Estévez's exchanges with Linda Montano, which he generously shared with me, were essential for the conception of In His Shoes and his personification of the Infant Jesus of Prague. This influence is evident in the length of his incarnation of Christ: three days. Montano began her long devotion to durational performance after being tied for a year to Tehching Hsieh (Art / Life, One-Year Performance, 1983-1984). It is added to the impact of Montano in Estévez's work that in In His Shoes the irony is so subliminal that it becomes a profession of faith on the divine potential of art, instead of an iteration of the humanism of religious beliefs .

Other thinkers creator have reached the extreme of systematizing a multidisciplinary artistic practice with psychology and unconventional knowledge, such as the Psychomagia of the poet, novelist, avant-garde film and theater director, Kabbalist, actor and tarologist Alejandro Jodorowsky. Jodorowsky's panic events in Mexico City during the 14s were conceptual parties where his role as host - I add: curator - was to facilitate the representation of the fantasy of a chosen guest. At the inaugural event of this prolific series, a famous artist sacrificed a chicken in order to create an abstract painting of the animal's guts and blood, while next to him, his wife, dressed in a Nazi uniform, devoured a dozen of chicken tacos.XNUMX The Panic Theater is based on ephemeral acts alien to time and space. As in "classical" performance art, panic space has its own real limits, it cannot symbolize another space: it is what it is at any specific moment. Jodorowsky considers the panic man an exactor - I add: performance artist - who is not executing a performance because the character has been completely eliminated. In the ephemeral - I add: performance - the man panic - I add: woman - he strives to become the person he or she is "being". Jodorowsky motivated the spectator-actors to achieve a theatrical act consisting of the interpretation of their own drama, exploring its deepest enigma.

When Nicolás Dumit Estévez approached me and raised his need for a mother figure to accompany him in his transition from artist to divinity and vice versa, I immediately agreed. In its original proposal, the dress process was to be a private event documented on video, while the undressing would take place in a white cube. Both guidelines were followed to the letter. After our return from a three-day stay of intense and exhausting participation in the Prague Quadrennial, an event entirely devoted to the theatrical scenery, Estévez reconsidered the initial format of the undress. Instead of talking about performance art while he was singing a kind of liberating mantra and putting on his human garment again, I would talk about my own experience with pregnancy. My first reaction was panic. But, trying to put on a bravely intellectual face, I agreed. In the artistic space of Berlin, after undressing the Holy Child of Prague, keeping his blue contact lenses and shaving his artificial blond hair, change position with the artist. I sat on the chair and gave my speech. He sang and dressed his clothes, while at the same time a video about breastfeeding was shown. The voice of Estévez and the middle-aged man in the video praising the benefits of breastfeeding were the perfect buffer for my speech. I felt completely free to publicly express the history of my last failed pregnancies and closed with the memory of my first night as a mother, when I breast-fed my son, now twenty-three years old, for six consecutive hours in an Australian hospital. In the manner of Montano and Jodorowsky, I became my own healer through the reconstruction of my own drama. The distance between the catalyst-healer and the public-performer had disappeared. Life and art became one in that moment of innocence; I was being a panic healer.

From 2012, I curated a project in Berlin entitled BE.BOP. BLACK EUROPE BODY POLITICS. Many of The collaboratorThey are artists from the Caribbean Diaspora who live in Europe and other places. This has been my strategy to conceptualize the Caribbean in Berlin without openly affirming it. As in the process described above, I have dialogically theorized different concepts such as "Afro-European decolonial aesthetics" and "modernity art plantations". In his poem The networks have many holes (Nets Have Many Holes), the Caribbean writer and performer Quinsy Gario offers a transforming perspective on how modernity persists in the construction of our conception about ourselves, by describing our presence in the cube white as "space invaders":

Say goodbye
to easy and comfortable generalizations
That lie between
the ashes of the suspension of disbelief.
We are the invaders, squatters
of the plantations of modern art
that lead us to and beyond the edge
of sanity and the sanatorium
and sterilization.

Resounding with Gario, I have paraphrased this relentless segregation of planetary artistic traditions by l @ s inherit@s of the "white privilege" in contemporary art as a symptom of the "plantations of modern art" .15 As Antonio Benítez Rojo points out in the island that is repeated, 16 our thinker@sy creator @ estThey are immersed in an inescapable plantation mentality. Challenging this state of affairs is what the artists of the diaspora of Saint Domingue have in common with other Caribbean and Black diasporas. Among other radical points of view, they have chosen to dismantle the coloniality of knowledge and being and create the possibility of a feeling that eliminates the hegemonic "supremacy" of modernity, facing its violently racializing gaze. The performance and video art of Teresa María Díaz Nerio, Hommage à Sara Bartman, is a splendid example in that sense. Here, Díaz Nerio remains motionless for 30 minutes on a pedestal while the public is forced to reproduce the same contemptuous voyeuristic action of the original "show". What is at stake in this staging is not the humanity of Sara Bartman, but the unavoidable character of the look of modernity-coloniality over the Other, especially with regard to the Blacks, and above all to women Black

It is important to clarify that I assume the Caribbean diaspora as organically implicit within the Black and / or African Diaspora in Europe, following the thought of Stuart Hall18 and tant @ s otr@s. There is a vast worldwide bibliography of studies on the diaspora, and in particular in Europe we find specific situational reformulations of the term multiplying everywhere. We can find several conceptualizations of diasporic aesthetics in postcolonial studies within what has been called "the Age of the Diaspora." 19 Kobena Mercer has published numerous works on the subject since the 1980 decade. Other conceptual contributions include "afrodiasporic aesthetics" by Alexander Weheliye and "diasporic African forms" by Krista Thompson. These concepts and theoretical approaches share a common thread with the influential essays on diaspora the cultural representation of Stuart Hall. They also share a dialogical vigor in their analysis. The author@s systematically choose to articulate their ideas focusing on practices
specific cultures instead of trying to establish another universalizing abstract paradigm. In other words, these are conceptualizations specific to situations, comme il faut. In the case of Thompson, the approach arises from the difference of class existing between the dances of graduation of the Bahamas, influenced by hip-hop. Weheliye, "accompanied" by WEB Du Bois, Walter Benjamin, and Ralph Ellison, introduces the "sonic afro-modernity" as an indicator of the disjunction between sound and origin exemplified in The Souls of the Black People (The Souls of Black Folk). ).

For the sake of clarity, I will cite Agustín Lao Montes's definition of the African diaspora, since he feels closer to my own experience as a member of the Caribbean diaspora: "If the historic-world field that we now call the African Diaspora , as a condition for dispersion and as a process of displacement, it is based on the forms of violence and terror that are central to modernity, it also means a cosmopolitan project of articulation of the historical diversity of the peoples of Africa, creating intellectual / cultural currents translocal, as well as political movements. "

Lao Montes, a decolonial thinker, observes that our strategies of re-existence are an integral part of modernity; instead of defining ourselves we ourselves@s as "other modernities", we decided to call ourselves "decolonized coloniality".

The following quote from Stuart Hall is illustrative of a fundamental questioning of decolonial thinking and aesthetics with respect to post-colonial and cultural studies: "Reflecting on my own sense of identity, I realize that it has always depended on the fact of being a migrant, that is, of my difference before you. So one of the fascinating things about this discussion is that I can finally find myself focused on myself. Now that, in the postmodern era, everyone feels scattered, I find myself focused. What I had thought as scattered and fragmented has become, paradoxically, the way in which modern experience is represented; this is 'Back home' with more encouragement! "

From the decolonial perspective, we have never abandoned "the house" (coloniality). The process of decolonization of our minds implies the acceptance of this fact. We have always been here as the hidden side of modernity; therefore, our presence in it is self-explanatory.26 Self-sufficiency, on the other hand, is something that decolonial thinking and doing shares with Hall's maxim, since ultimately, our mutual recognition in the mirages of modernity sympathize And that's why my previous curatorial perspective of questioning the 'need' of a visa so that the artists Dominicans - and, by extension, Caribbean and "otr @ s" - work on issues unrelated to the politics of identity expressed in Insight into Otherness has been radically subverted. I, like my companyer @ s On this journey towards liberation, I have come to realize that Hall's "Coming home with more courage!" is the most sensible way to articulate an intelligent dialogue with modernity / coloniality.

To give greater strength to the discussion regarding the persistence of the view of the "white privilege" in the perpetuation of stereotypes that Díaz Nerio exposes brutally in his work, I share here an excerpt from an extensive essay on Sara Bartman in co-authorship with Simi Dullay, South African artist and writer of Indian descent, or as she calls herself "South African danistani", who spent more than a decade of her childhood and youth in Denmark with her family of political exiles. Decolonizing Sarah Bartmann or how to create epistemic changes by rethinking emails as a theory (Decolonizing Sarah Bartmann Or How To Create Epistemic Shifts By Rethinking Emails As Theory) revolves around an exchange of emails between a white colleague and Dullay, who openly challenged her offensive interpretation of the legacy of this iconic figure, considered today as a symbol of post-Apartheid South Africa. Here the first paragraph of the email.

"What I usually do in the tutorial is to start talking about 'The Body' in relation to the story of Saartjie Baartman; I use this as a way to discuss how Baartman's race and gender ... "

Gender is not something natural, organic; neither is "race", therefore, this sentence should say: "The way in which Baartman was racialized by the white normative gaze (colonialist and genocidal)", among many other options. "... They gave rise to their enslavement ..."

By whom? Who enslaved her? The passive voice in this phrase naturalizes the enslavement of the other by the whites as the most logical thing in the world. "... That his race and his gender (and to some extent his ancestral history) ..."

"Ancestral history" operates as a parameter of otherness, l @ s Black@s "ancestros", but not real "history", this is part of the omnipresent legacy of the Kantian ethnoracial tetragonía, conceptualized by Walter Mignolo, and the ahistorical character of the African continent perpetuated by Hegel and challenged by Olufemi Taiwo, among others . "... They were used to 'differentiate it from the Western norm' - their body was seen as an aberration ..."

Once again, was he seen by whom? The passive form normalizes the white look again. "... And this is directly related to your race and your sex (and your gender) ..." Who made this link? And hit him with the "race" "... And the assumptions grew ..."

Assumptions? Who made them? What about talking about the context of these so-called "assumptions" in the pseudo-scientific ideologies of "race"?
"... in relation to your sexuality ... and also to continue talking about the contraction of Baartman's sexually transmitted diseases ..."

Sara Bartman did not "contract", she was infected by Europeans, by the white man! It is interesting how Dullay's colleague gives Bartman free will exclusively on this point. This is the first and only time you used the active form to talk about it.

"... and begin to link the notion that certain sexualities and sexual practices become ..."

These practices do not "come back", they are actively constructed in a continuity that is only a "discovery" for white people.

"... pathologized (and often blamed for the spread of sexually transmitted diseases ... this is continued the following week in relation to HIV /
AIDS)..."

This phrase and its context eloquently portray the implacable determination of the white gaze to focus on any issue about Negritude towards the pathological and its trauma. What if instead we turned Sara Bartman's narrative into a celebration of re-existence and talked about how her remains have returned to South Africa thanks to Black feminists from all over the world and, finally, under the direct intervention of Nelson Mandela?

Teresa María Díaz Nerio decided to dedicate her graduation piece to this iconic figure. Currently, she deals with the construction of stereotypes of women from the Caribbean diaspora in Amsterdam, where she lives, a city famous for human trafficking and its sex workers industry. Díaz Nerio has had to face the way in which Dominican women have internalized certain stereotypes and has found an ideal vehicle for understanding this phenomenon in the appearances of what she calls blackmestizas (black mestizas) in film, television and radio in the Hispanic Caribbean and Mexico in the 40 and 50 years.

Neither 'mummy' nor 'mulatto' (2013) is a performance conference based on the hyper sexualized "mulata" and the "faithful servant" or "mamita", and illustrates how during colonialism these figures emerged, which often became symbols of nationalist representations after independence. In Ni 'mamita' or 'mulatto', Díaz Nerio deconstructs the film Yambaò (1957), with the Cuban rumbera Ninón Sevilla located on a plantation in the Cuba of 1850. Ninón Sevilla personifies the "mulatto" called Yambaó, dissident, embaucadora and cimarrona, who personifies Ochún, the goddess of love in the Yoruba religion of Cuba. Diaz Nerio's performance deconstructs supremacist white imaginaries, the use of brownface and blackface, and offers a decolonial reading on the use of Afro-Cuban dances, songs, rituals and the legacy of great Black singers, such as Merceditas Valdés, Xiomara Alfaro, Martha Jean -Claude, Olga Guillot, and other extraordinary artists, such as Juana Bacalao, Celia Cruz and Rosita Jean-Ophilia, La Haitianita.

The artists Negr @ s of the diaspora often play the role of griots, guardians of oral traditions, and personify the erased accounts of coloniality. The videoart Generationzzzzz (2013), by Mwangi Hutter, a Kenyan-German artistic entity, addresses the futility of public interventions, as well as the ethical imperatives imposed by what Silvio Torres Saillant has called "the tribe of Negritude". The megaphone serves to explain an unintelligible speech to passers-by on a busy street in Nairobi; this action simultaneously addresses the challenges of political activism as well as certain absurdities of artistic practice.

Sasha Huber has dedicated a series of collaborative works to the legacy of the Swiss scientist ouis Agassiz, who spent a considerable amount of time in Brazil. For the São Paulo Biennial (2010), he found several places that bear his name and planned sophisticated and revealing interventions, both in the city and in the countryside. Entitled Louis Who? What you should know about Louis Agassiz, this series of interventions in the public space, often using a megaphone, focuses on how pseudo science, known as scientific racism, led to the development of photography as a documentary and visual medium. Huber delves into the historical context and meaning of Agassiz's photographs of the Black and indigenous populations of Brazil.

Also with the help of a megaphone, the Dominican artist based in Miami, Charo Oquet, uses her characteristic iconoclasm, simultaneously proclaiming herself as María Sabina, Santa Marta the Dominadora and a Dadaist clown. The founding myth of this déollage will be explained later by means of the interpretation of Oquet's intuitive (self) healing approach, applying art to Jung's analysis of the legacy of Paracelsus, a famous German alchemist. Through the personification of a trickster, she extends her message to a bewildered audience, and by creating sounds with her own voice and flooding her surroundings with an explosion of colorful artifacts, she seeks to heal herself as well as passers-by. This exercise of reconciliation with the inherently human spirituality, which assumes the most trivial object or gesture as potentially sacred, materializes in many of its actions, especially those related to the "double wound" of Saint-Domingue's condition.

The interaction with the public is vital in Oquet's performative efforts. In Look Me in the Eyes, Oquet urged Dominican and Haitian passers-by to stop for a moment and exchange a symbolic gift that she herself provided. They were asked to look each other in the eye. This self-explanatory gesture created discomfort, but also sometimes reached a moment of mutual recognition. The metaphor of the inseparability of the dual, of the twin principle of Marassá, the loa that symbolizes the condition of Saint-Domingue as the only space in the Caribbean with two nations that share the same territory, is addressed in the performance All Tied Up / Tied . Oquet tied herself with her back to a Haitian salesman outside the Museum of Modern Art, in an action reminiscent of the aforementioned Tehching Hsieh and Linda Montano. The inability to move in any direction without the consent of the other is dramatically accentuated by tying both participants back to back.

Corde à Cailloux (2014), by Élodie Barthélemy is a work in collaboration with the acrobat Nicolle Perrier and the musicians Chiara Simeone and Joran Le Nabat. The string is staged as a symbol of the multidimensional character of human relationships. Sometimes the string is raised in the middle of the scene and in others it serves as a mirror of the physical character of the borders between the two women on stage. The dramaturgy is deliberately enigmatic and consists of the juxtaposition of the elements on the stage and their manipulation by the artists. There is an obvious connection with the idiosyncratic dual collective subconscious to the condition of Saint-Domingue. Barthélemy is bound and frees herself from her counterpart by revealing the tensions and frustrations of Marassá's inescapable condition to Saint-Domingue and, in doing so, crystallizes her inherent self-healing potential. As in any therapeutic agenda, a diagnosis is already part of the solution, which in turn can only materialize by exploring and naming our shared realities and calling each of its elements by name. Furthermore, I will argue that in conversations with the critic and Dominican curator Sara Hermann, this multitude of inescapable interconnections and realities typifies the particular diasporic reexistence of Saint-Domingue's condition within what the Spanish artist and philosopher Jana Leo has aptly called The trip without distance. According to Leo, instead of dissociating travel away, what this concept really means is that to reach a very
Far away, it is not necessary to undertake a journey.27 I agree with the concept in a different way, following the author's wish, the hypothesis is now in my hands to be delimited instead of occupied.

According to Dominican and Haitian statistics29, both economies rely significantly on international cables, known as "remittances" in Spanish and as "transfé" in Haitian Creole. The proportion is remarkable and shows how in each imaginary the absence of those who left is truly illusory. The financial interdependencies between the communities of Saint-Domingue in the diaspora, and their local counterparts, is a conclusive reflection of their social and political interactions. Therefore, the diasporic condition of Saint-Domingue, as experience, becomes part of the narrative of self-identification, even for those who have lived on the island permanently. Obviously, each experience is informed differently according to gender, class and racialization, but what is important here is to highlight how this collective diasporic being, beyond geographical borders, becomes an identifiable territory.

In this sense, the iconoclastic work of Eliú Almonte is illustrative. Raised and resident in Puerto Plata, the artist exerts his irreverent approach to memory and alienation in a consistent manner in different media, but above all with performance, video art and installation. Almonte's critical distance from his circumstances is remarkable, especially in regard to local politics and the shared histories of colonialism and dictatorship of the "double wound", emblematic of Puerto Plata, undoubtedly the most cosmopolitan city on the island, since its origins, this Atlantic enclave - thanks to its commercial networks - has enjoyed a unique relationship with the English-speaking Caribbean, especially with the Turks and Caicos Islands. Added to that, the 22 years of Haitian government (Jean-Pierre Boyer, 1822-1844), with French as the official language, have contributed to the multilingual character of Puerto Plata. With the opening in August of 1900 of the first movie theater in the country, using one of the first Cinématographes Lumiére, and with its pioneering development of photography, the iconic role of Puerto Plata in the visual imaginary of the Dominican Republic is of made apodictic. This ability to flow between mental and emotional landscapes, subjects and means; This ability to observe Saint-Domingue from a diasporic and transnational dual perspective materializes profusely in the Atlantic vigor of Almonte, as will be discussed later.

In 2005, David Pérez Karmadavis asked a Haitian seller to write his own diagnosis on a piece of paper about the traumatic - to speak softly - relationship between the two nations, and then he had this message tattooed on his arm during the first Festival of Body Art, in Caracas. Like a great majority of l @ s dominican@s, although the artist has dedicated many of his performance pieces to explore the relationship between both populations, until now he has never visited Haiti. Note that here I am saying populations instead of nations. Since he does not speak Creole, Karmadavis had no idea what the piece of paper was saying. He only found out later, when l @ s haitian@s who talked to him on the street asked him why he had that phrase tattooed on his arm. It is a conversational and durational piece in the strictest sense. The text says that all the problems between the two countries have been created by their respective economic and political elites: "Biznis gouvenman benefis gouvenman".

The massacre of Haitian workers in 1937 ordered by Trujillo has been up to the Constitutional norm 168 / 1332 the most important topic of conversation in Haitian territory with respect to its neighbors. And I notice here that I use the word conversation instead of dialogue. In my experience, since 1994 I have spent long periods of time residing in Haiti, I can assure you that this is a fact of our shared history that every Haitian knows. By contrast, the 22 period in which Jean-Pierre Boyer ruled the entire island is marked with only 12 lines in textbooks, and consequently, the same happens with the absence of Dominican characters in Haitian literature, such as has exposed Hoffmann (2008).

Eliú Almonte and some intellectuals, such as Freddy Prestol Castillo, who in his novel El Massacre is on foot recounts his version of what l @ s dominican@s they call "The Court", they have dealt with this moment of history in a rigorous way. At 2000, Almonte presented an installation at X-Teresa Arte Actual, in Mexico City, as part of a collective exhibition dedicated entirely to the artists dominican @ s the island and in the diaspora.34 Two plexiglass maps of the island were reflected, one on the floor, the other hanging from the ceiling. On the ground, the different categories of racialization used in Dominican territory to "classify" people were printed in red; Naked bones sprinkled with sea salt were placed on top. At the top, the second map was completely covered with dozens of bunches of parsley. The defiant allegory about the 1937 massacre represented by this condiment, suspended from above, suggests a permanent state of alert regarding an inescapable episode of our shared history. The inclusion of the provocative and redeeming piece of Almonte in this exhibition responded to my insistence on the inclusion of Haiti within what is considered an exhibition or a historical event "Dominican". This emphasis also extends to the regional enigma of the Hispanic Caribbean, which until recently had systematically excluded the irrefutable importance of Haiti, especially the Haitian Revolution. I have done this consistently since my processes of physical and mental decolonization began -in 1988, after my participation as a dancer in the Afro-Dominican choreography Lives and Death of an Island, by Marilí Gallardo, dedicated to Saint-Domingue; and in 1994, after my first visit to Port-au-Prince- in my curatorial and theoretical work, as well as as a writer and journalist. On the other hand, after the Constitutional Sentence 168 / 13, I have defined myself as an epistemic Haitian and a Dominican in transit.

Raúl Recio echoed the celebration of gagá in the eighties. After joining the artist Pedro Terreiro in gagá rituals, he created one of his most prolific series, Gaga Party Tonight, which was also the title of his exhibition at the Nouveau Art Center (1988). A year later, the exhibition was presented in Guadalajara, Mexico, at the Carlos Ashida Gallery. The altars of "popular religiosity" have also appeared in the work of Jorge Severino, Jochi Asiático, Geo Ripley and Noris Binet, among others. The discontinuity of these manifestations suggests, however, a void within the local canon, in which Western hegemonic traditions have had pre-eminence over the African heritage. As Fernando Valerio Holguín insists, 3 Pedro Henríquez Ureña's Hispanic legacy is reflected in all spheres of Dominican intellectual activity, in the artistic, social and political fields. As in the rest of the world, most the artists dominican @ s continThey are immersed in the mirages of the artistic plantations of modernity.

Traditionally, the cultural recovery of gaga is expressed with greater discursive coherence in music, based on the research and recording work of Luis Dias, José Duluc, Irka Mateo and Roldán Mármol, among others. In the mid-nineties, the Fundación Cultural Bayahonda organized the series of concerts known as Artistas por el gagá. More recently, I would dare to point out the devastating earthquake in Haiti in January of 2010, as the main reason why the artists Dominicans have consistently and progressively addressed issues related to Saint Domingue in his work. Proof of this was the 26th National Visual Arts Biennial (2011). As the award jury, it was fascinating to observe the significant number of works that dealt with the “double wound”. One of the most memorable was the award-winning Mi = muro, by Pancho Rodríguez. The hymns of Haiti and the Dominican Republic sounded juxtaposed in this deceptively simple video installation. An unpretentious wall, built of blocks and concrete, divided the space. On one side of the wall, a projection showed the back of a Haitian man working on a construction site. The other side showed it head-on. The artist's interest in portraying the presence of Haitian workers in the Dominican construction industry is poetically linked to his own experience, since his house where he lives was built by Haitians whom he never knew personally. Time and space are challenged simultaneously in this piece of withering lucidity Where does the dweller's habitat end? Where does the presence of the permanent inhabitant begin? The spirit of the Other will be forever present in this space, despite all the nationalist propaganda.


Interestingly, the 1937 massacre is the only crucial reference in relation to a shared history for The creator@s Haitians, like Edwidge Danticat (The Farming of Bones, 1998). Apart from that, and especially in the visual arts, I have found a symptomatic limbo in terms of works on bilateral relations made by artistshaitian stic @ s@s, in line with the conclusions drawn by León-Francois Hoffmann regarding the literature and before mentioned. Perhaps because the exceptions confirm the rule, Hispaniola (2009), a mural by Frank Zephirin, presents the duality of the island in a redemptive way, surrounded by a heart made of tiny flowers and representing Haiti as the masculine force and the Dominican Republic like the feminine principle dressed as a bride, in white, in the form of Siréne or Mami Watta, or Santa Marta the Dominadora, a powerful loa of the Dominican voodoo equally venerated, respected and feared by the devotees of both sides of the island.

The two queens (1995), by Charo Oquet, equates Yemayá with Queen Isabel I of England. This self-explanatory painting is a strategic epistemic intervention, which is also reproduced in the series Mami Watta, where the symbology of African inspiration is juxtaposed to Western aesthetic canons. Santa Marta the Dominadora has protected Charo Oquet since she painted her first canvas. The ancestral siren emerged in his studio in New Zealand and then quickly disappear into the hands of a collector. Later, Oquet rediscovered her in a friend's collection of African art publications, where Mami Watta was depicted with red hair and blue torso. Chromolithography, reproduced in a compilation of African art in the Smithsonian, reappeared before her a little later in the Mercado Modelo in Santo Domingo, located in El Pequeño Haití. The image, made by a German of the nineteenth century married to a charming snake, is an irreplaceable element in the altars of the so-called "popular religiosity", when you avoid saying "Dominican voodoo". The term, coined in the early nineties by anthropologists Soraya Aracena and José Francisco Alegría Pons, after years of living in a batey, remains controversial. The fascination with Santa Marta the Dominadora, the giver of material goods, personal power and beauty, the one that conquers impossible loves, irrevocably links the fate of Charo Oquet with that of her ancestors. The most popular among all the loas of the Dominican voodoo pantheon, 38 wife of San Elías, the Baron of the Cemetery, received her again in the fire of the feared beings of the batey La Ceja, n full gagá, where she arrived more than a decade later of having painted that first canvas in his study of the Antipodes.

Oquet dedicated her thesis to this experience and was awarded a Summa Cum Laude in Visual Arts by the International University of Florida. He also devised a series of altars that were widely exhibited in South Florida at the beginning of this century. It is evident that the liberating force of this "second" series of altars is distinguished from its previous work with its deliberately chaotic juxtaposition of elements of the three predominant African religions in Miami: the Yoruba of Cuba, the Haitian voodoo and the Dominican voodoo. In the first series, Oquet was photographed with the camera in automatic in front of his own recreation of the popular altars, in an act of intimacy that, after the explosion of the second series and his individual in the Ambrosino Gallery, in 1999, he could Very well be classified as shy. The power of Santa Marta pervades a fiery voluptuousness, a power that intensifies in the bodies of those who celebrate the gaga by means of the bottle, elevated by rum and beer. The photographic series that documents the four days and nights in which Oquet accompanied the gagá procession, a place of exceptional communion of the border insularity, reveals a serenity of the social sciences, a look more interested in domestic than in the spectacular nature of dance in trance, more interested in the iconography of the costumes than in the set of gestures that complement or inspire them. Academic curiosity is sustained for more than one reason, to discover the genesis of Saint-Domingue's condition, the concern that motivated her to delve into Dominican history, to which she had no access, since she had been educated in schools Americans The recognition of this other reality, the gaga, where "you can not easily know who is Dominican and who is Haitian," also largely resolved their childhood curiosity caused by the Haitian laundresses with their naked breasts on the banks of the river Masacre , on the border, where he lived his first years: "I wanted to understand how it was possible that our country had massacred the Haitians. As an adult, I have never been able to live in the Dominican Republic, where I am horrified by the latent racism - my mother is Black, but she raised us to marry a white man, as she did - I also could not live in Haiti, so I I immersed myself in this search in Miami, where I met great Haitian intellectuals, activists and artists. I traveled to Haiti in 1997, with the purpose of finding this place between the two peoples, where they lived with the Dominicans, but I did not find it, as I did not find it as a girl on the border. "

The siren song of Mami Watta invited her to seek salvation in her own blood, where she lives, and compares the threads of guilt or shame in the pentagram of a song with many voices, whose unfinished genealogy was described by CG Jung in his proverbial enumeration of the teachings of Paracelsus, and where the followers of Santa Marta the Dominadora unfold their universal psychic powers. Although Jung's trip omits - the reasons why he left it to the experts - any reference to Mami Watta or to an archetype represented in African religions, the myth, fundamental for the astrophysical principles of healing proclaimed with iconoclastic fervor by Paracelsus , becomes the work of Charo Oquet, not only in a paradigm of African-Americanism, according to his paladin, Robert Farris Thompson, but beyond that, in an incomparable legacy of Dominican, Haitian and Caribbean art.

We must also celebrate with greater conviction that this intimate longing to understand the guilt or historical shame that has guided Oquet in the arduous and prolific terrain of self-knowledge, that is, the redemption of the alchemists, lacks the rational links with alchemy. and also, naturally, with the ideas of Paracelsus. Celebrate with fascination the precision of Oquet's intuitive approach to the "reality" of man as a microcosm posed by Paracelsus, added to the perfection of the latent possibility that every woman and man possesses, in his own bodily realm, the ability to understand the world, the only way it can be transformed.

As I mentioned before, it is precisely in the experiential, organic conception of the cosmos where voodoo sustains its practice and mythology.

In a powerful and courageous gesture, Oquet not only proclaims itself as the legitimate heir of his African heritage, but, at the same time, takes the opportunity to put on the same level the triple religiosity of the Antilles that surrounds it, challenging together with the cultural boundaries between the communities of the Diaspora of Saint-Domingue the fragmentary notion of organized knowledge that, from theorization on rituals, continues to preserve neocolonialist anthropological approaches. Nor does it protected by favorable currents, those that decide when a work is successful in the art market and when it is not; rather nothing against the current, with a resistance that can be classified as heroic. In this way, Charo Oquet states in a transparent manner that his goal is to subordinate himself to the domination of Santa Marta, the universal woman or Melusina. Oquet, like all those who try to reach the high sphere of Anthroposophy, is ruled by the golden rule of the lonely Melusina, the most feared by all, in which "only" you have the company of yourself.

Cantos de sirena, a performance performed at 2001 in the Senda Gallery in Barcelona, ​​whose sound installation mixes songs of whales and dolphins with the impossible record of Yma Sumac, along with African drums of water, is another manifestation of its paradigmatic purification . "I dedicated my first exhibition in Spain to Santa Marta the Dominadora because she has given me a lot. In this performance I was possessed, I even stepped on a burning cigarette without being burned. "In this description of her" dominated woman "status, given to her archetypal ardor, the paragraph quoted below seems to verify a product of the involuntary omission of a person who He dreamed about his work and did not know what to call it:

"The stories of the Melusina are deceptive images of fantasy, a mixture of reason and absurdity, the veil of a sorceress who draws mortals through the labyrinth of life. From these images, a wise person extracts 'the greatest source of inspiration', in other words, meaning and value; it extracts as in a distillation process, collecting the exquisite drops of Sophiae's liquor in the clever container of her soul, in which she "opens the window" to understanding, that is, illuminates. That is why Paracelsus refers to a process of separation and discrimination, a critical process of judgment that separates straw from wheat-a vital element in the struggle against the unconscious. Going crazy is not an art, but extracting wisdom from madness is the greatest art. Madness is the mother of the wise, never prudence. "

The third period of the Charo Oquet altars, presented during the 4th Caribbean Biennial (2001), discourages any speculation about the system of its sacred madness. In an amazing turn of 360 degrees, Oquet stripped his altars, revealing the skeleton that unites them with the academic tridimensionality of the West, achieving a work of captivating beauty and harmony, "interpreting" really the languages ​​and languages ​​that coexist in our time.

In the series Mami Watta (2007), Oquet recreates the narrative of this powerful loa in another context. Transgressing the class limits so frequent and visible in our Caribbean societies, especially in terms of racialization, is a constant in his work. In an episode of this series, he immersed himself in a neighborhood plastic pool with the approval of his owners. As stated earlier, improvisation and interaction with existing environmental elements, as well as with the public, is intrinsic to their practice. Another component of the Mami Watta series was the reversal of the unwritten rules of behavior in a beauty salon through the use of the same element, a red hair wig to "infuse" the powers of Mami Watta to hairdressers . Using this resource she elevated the status of the only Haitian employee in this beauty salon, palpably intimidated by her co-workers, performing the same work on her feet as she had previously done with the artist, also using the red wig as a significant of the constructed and interchangeable nature of hegemonic notions of the self and the Other. In this way, Oquet once again dismantles class boundaries with a performative gesture towards healing, which repeats that famous act that an anti-Jewish establishment activist did more than 2000 years ago.

Born and raised in Switzerland, daughter of Haitian mother and Swiss father, Sasha Huber has been in Haiti only twice. The epic narrations of her nation and her legacy as granddaughter of the prominent Haitian painter Georges Ramponneau, and being her mother also a painter, have permeated her own definition as an artist. The 2010 earthquake left her in a state of despair that she transmuted symbolically by wearing the emblematic colors of the Haitian flag and drawing snow angels in memory of the deceased with the intention of healing herself from the pain of her impotence. In the daring intervention of the public space -or rather land-art- Rentyhorn, Sasha Huber collaborates with a campaign initiated by the Swiss writer, historian and activist Hans Fässler, with the aim of changing the name of a mountain in the Canton of Bern called as the racist scientist Louis Agassiz. This proposal of visibilization of the hidden legacies of slavery and its corresponding racist theories is materialized by Huber in a poster with the portrait of a person that Agassiz used to illustrate his ideas of the so-called "inferiority" of the African peoples. The name of this man was Renty, and hence the initiative to change the name of the mountain to his name and that is also the title of this work that, according to the artist "... denies Agassiz his mountain and changes the name Rentyhorn, in honor of Renty and the men and women who have suffered a similar fate. "

Huber presented the documentation of this action in 2008, in Finland. Along with this documentation on video, he exhibited his representation of Renty in a traditional African dress with a stapled portrait of Louis Agassiz, linking it with his previous work, the Shooting Back Series. In this series, Huber literally shoots the past in the narrative of the repression of Duvalierism, something that she did not experience personally, but that defines her feeling, being and way of thinking about the world, which is also the case of Teresa's interpretation. María Díaz Nerio of trujillismo. The physical aspect of this action and the sound of the stapling gun also function as a method of self healing, helping the artist in the process of facing the "dual wound" of Saint-Domingue's condition. According to Huber, each staple represents the death of innumerable people as part of the legacy of Duvalierism.

Also from the experience of the "dual wound", Teresa María Díaz Nerio relives in Trono de oro (2007) the narrative of a story that she, as well as Huber, has listened mainly in historical and family stories and, later, invested a considerable time investigating. The condition of Saint-Domingue -exceptional, in fact- within the Caribbean diaspora is sealed by his brutal dictatorships (Duvalier-Trujillo), among other historical variables. This particular demetaforización45 of the colonial and imperial wounds is what I intend to highlight with the use of the term "dual wound". In their shared social (diasporic) being, the inhabitants of this exceptional Antillean imaginary constantly face the freshness of the blood shed by these barbaric dictators. Unlike the rest of the Caribbean, where the relevance of colonial legacies is filtered by its occurrence in a time imagined as distant, in Saint Domingue the descendants of the heroes and heroines of anti-dictatorial activism and their assassins, today continue to share the same Historic moment.

It is in fact in the accounts of the blood recently spilled that these artists of the Marassá de Saint-Domingue nations are inserting their contributions in the field of creation of knowledge about the Caribbean diaspora. Our wounds are still very fresh and if the Constitutional Sentence 168 / 13 is not the "perfect" example of this, I do not know what else it could be.

According to Díaz Nerio: "The island of Trujillo (2007) is based on a photograph of Trujillo at the beginning of his dictatorship in which he wears a very elaborate suit full of (false) badges that arm his self-inflated character and his ability to whiten." In the process of creating this piece, Díaz Nerio is inspired by South African flowers, especially Proteas and Encephalartos, a cica, a palm tree that has many varieties and that is in danger of extinction and survives mainly in the botanical gardens of Europe. For the artist, its characteristics remind the male sexual organs and therefore their connection with narcissism and the coloniality of nature.

I would like to finish with the songs of redemption of Charo Oquet and Élodie Barthélemy followed by a conclusive quote that Nicolás Dumit Estévez recently offered at an event dedicated to the gender and the Caribbean body. Oquet and Barthélemy have used color as a healing resource in their performances. Retaking on the Yoruba Engungu tradition, 46 Charo Oquet dedicates Engungu blank to heal herself from the loss of her sister and other relatives in the 2013 year. This performance combines this yoruba legacy with the traditional Dominican celebration of "Cabo de año", a Congo ritual that commemorates the first anniversary of the passage to another dimension of a family member. Oquet uses the monochromatic healing potential of white, the same one evoked by Sasha Huber's snow angels.

In Poison (2014), Oquet reads aloud the chemical components of popular poisons and counteracts the scientific content of these texts with deceptively erratic actions. A video with striking colors, graphic and alphabetical symbols was projected onto the artist, trying to create a sensation of dislocation, of a guided chaos that could eventually help the audience reach a state of connection with the intangible part of reality and, so much, to enter a shared space of unity and redemption.

In Dynamo (2013), the melodramatic dreads of Élodie Barthelémy are combined with classical music and action painting: two emblematic examples of Western discursive hegemony. The dreadlocks of the bivouac, of the rebel, which Bob Marley popularized immeasurably, are paired to a concert for cello, as well as Jackson Pollock's legacy: action painting. This performance summarizes the discursive strategies of these magicians of the condition humaine in Saint Domingue, embodying their unwavering commitment to a Pan-Africanism of the Garvey-Marley, while at the same time operating in the common consciousness of how the artistic plantations of modernity persist in constructing The Other, camouflaging it under the fallacies of
"secular" imperative of the Enlightenment.

Nicolás Dumit Estévez rightly proposes that modernity-coloniality is generally weak of understanding when understanding the public execution of non-normative sexuality through collective contacts, as shown by the carnivals and the non-institutional religiosities that take place in Caribbean. The Otherness built of modernity is quite inaccurate in this regard: "In any case, I remember the surprising naturalness with which as a child I understood that a man or a woman, regardless of their sexual identification, could be mounted, possessed by a loa of ambiguous gender (spirit). In short, some of the horses, the people who received the spirits, were my first introduction to what was before the term came to me from the academic world, or before I understood its double meaning in English. The Afro-Caribbean altar was the locus where I was exposed to the immense possibilities of performance, as an artist who could have the freedom to turn upside down, not only the lithography of San Antonio, but also the gender rules ".

A systematic dislocation of the discursive agenda of modernity / coloniality plays a decisive role in the creation of knowledge on the part of the artists de Saint-Domingue who share a "double wound". Through the reinterpretation of erroneous socio-political concepts, filling historical gaps and changing the tone and theme of the conversation about aesthetics, aestesis, feeling, gender, spirituality and healing, among other dimensions of liberation , they continue to expand Erna Brodber's theory of Black Consciousness with a distinctive impetus, a tangible result of her omnipresent and inescapable Marassá condition.

Taken from the Book Braiding a History in Progress, Contemporary Dominican Art in the Context of the Caribbean 

Alanna Lockward writer, researcher and curator of art

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