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Guillermo Gómez-Peña and Coco Fusco in 1992 March 11, 2011

Posted by ucisca in Uncategorized.
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In 1992, on the 500th anniversary of the “discovery” of America by Christopher Columbus, artists Guillermo Gómez-Peña and Coco Fusco performed the piece “The Year of the White Bear: Take One” in several locations in the United States and Europe, including a performance in the UCI Fine Arts Gallery from February 24 – March 4, 1992. The piece recreates the experience of two native inhabitants who are captured and taken to the land of their conquerors to be exhibited as curiosities. Gómez-Peña and Fusco impersonate native Amerindians from the fictitious land of Guatinaui. They spent at least three days in a cage, were feed through bars, and were taken to the bathroom on leashes. They also performed dances and told stories from their “native” culture. The same piece was also performed in Columbus Plaza in Madrid in 1992. Below are photographs of the performance and the artists’ statement about the piece.

AS-061. University Communication Photographs. Special Collections and Archives, the U.C. Irvine Libraries, Irvine, California. [Photographs]
PS-070. Department of Studio Art Publications. Special Collections and Archives, the U.C. Irvine Libraries, Irvine, California. [Announcement]

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