Art of sacrifice

ART OF SACRIFICE is a series of performative acts that precedes the work that took place in the Museum of Contemporary Art in Santiago, Chile, in 2007. For this exposition we decided to relocate the headstones that had corresponded to the installation IN MEMORY, in which we not only had to manipulate its content from a new time-place, but also resurrect the remains and fragments of the past installation and prepare them in the proper way so that they could return to exude life. To achieve this, we had to dig them up, and prepare them for their journey into a new existence where they would be destroyed completely by us, in unison, with a mallet, reciting all the names and dates inscribed on them. (See: Performance Altar of Sacrifice).

The first series of photographs shows the preparation of the cloths that would receive the headstones. On an altar, in an enclosed space, the fragmentation of the cloths took place; together we ripped the fabric until we completed the task of preparing the shrouds. The second series took place in a pool that we entered, once again adopting a kneeling pose, the pose of contemplation. Submerged in the water at dusk, in the way that our ancestors did, we washed each one of the headstones, removing the dirt that time had stuck on and which erased the inscriptions of a past time. For the last series, we prepared the site by filling it with candles, and from the pool we carried the headstones and the previously prepared cloths, so that there, under the light that guided us, we could wrap each headstone in a cloth and leave them prepared, each one in its shroud, ready for its disappearance. Once we had finished shrouding the headstones we took the texts we had read in unison during the Performance MEMORIA VELADA, 2002, and we burnt the texts one by one.