press release

"¿Tierra de nadie?" (No Man's Land?) is an exhibition that explores complex processes of land appropriation and different forms of popular resistance which incorporate a fundamental criticism of the logic of private property as the foundation of an economic and political system—liberal capitalism—and of a logic of fragmented social relationships. From the enclosure of the commons in the Middle Ages in England to colonial usurpation and the most recent strategies of appropriation of vast territories, the tenure and use of the land have been unequally negotiated between accumulation and the struggle of smallholders, between privatization and communal use.

These opposing processes of colonial and capitalist appropriation on the one hand, and of popular demands on the other, do not constitute a simple opposition. By using different media, the lines of research of the artists included in "¿Tierra de nadie?" reach different dimensions to those of academic research. Rather than presenting conclusions, the works shown here are capable of showing ramifications, complexities and paradoxes; to ask questions, and above all, to reveal specific histories. Far from offering an exhaustive geographical and historical analysis of the subject, "¿Tierra de nadie?" seeks to create a platform for reflection-that arouses from artistic practice-from which to point at an aspect of economic history which has always been subject to dispute, even now that the virtual dynamics of the global financial system seem to overshadow the crucial issue of the ownership and use of land.

The works in the exhibition explore specific cases and articulate varied relationships between them through the different times and places examined. From the privatisation of the commons and the proletarisation of the peasantry (Olivia Plender) to current strategies to establish legal frameworks for common tenure (Amy Balkin), the issue of the land is examined from the point of view of colonisation and the liberation struggles in different contexts (Mathieu Kleyebe Abonnenc, Maria Thereza Alves, Andrea Geyer, Ana María Millán), the current uses of the land and the discourses that legitimise them (Jimmie Durham), the popular movements of resistance and occupation (Abraham Cruzvillegas) and the ways of life, which are almost impossible today, in which the land is travelled rather than inhabited (José Arnaud-Bello, Vasco Araújo).

To complement and expand the issues approached in the exhibition, a documentation area has been organised, where some cases may be explored in greater depth. Additionally, a two-day course has been scheduled, and will include the contributions of artists, historians and filmmakers, all of whom have delved into these issues in their respective disciplines.

only in german

Kurator: Catalina Lozano

Künstler: Mathieu Kleyebe Abonnenc, Maria Thereza Alves, Vasco Araujo, José Arnaud-Bello, Amy Balkin, Abraham Cruzvillegas, Jimmie Durham, Andrea Geyer (with Simon J. Ortiz), Ana Maria Millan, Olivia Plender