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    Duque, Alejandro
    Meta-estéticas de disrupción / Alejandro Duque
    Hipercubo/ ok/ : arte, ciencia y tecnología en contextos próximos. -- Bogotá, Colombia : Universidad de los Andes : Goethe Institut, 2002
    p. 169- 177
    Book/pamphlet article – Essays
    Duque, Alejandro. "Meta- estéticas de disrupción." In Hipercubo/ ok/: arte, ciencia y tecnología en contextos próximos, 169- 177. Bogotá, Colombia: Universidad de los Andes- Goethe Institut, 2002.
    Brea, José Luis, 1957-2010; Varela, Francisco, 1946-2001

The text “Meta-estéticas de disrupción” proposes an approach to the development of new social and power structures based on the dynamics of the production and distribution of knowledge worldwide. Its starting point is the proposal and subsequent implementation of different technologies such as the Internet. The media artist Alejandro Duque considers the problem set forth above through the link of ART-ACTIVISM and the need to bring about commitment in the “culture wars” being waged every day, throughout the world. Duque emphasizes the position occupied by Latin America vis-à-vis the First World, specifically, its “pseudo-activism” when dealing with the “aristocracy of high–tech or technocracy” it finds in other highly developed parts of the world.


This text represents the thinking of the Colombian media artist Alejandro Duque (b. 1970) on the contemporary culture, globalization, and management of electronic media in the context of Latin America. It is essential to understand the position of this artist, since he analyzes the current situation of Third World media practices and the possibility that Latin America might generate knowledge based on a critical perspective. In turn, the book hipercubo/ok/: arte, ciencia y tecnología en contextos próximos is one of the few attempts made in Colombia to set forth themes linked to contemporary art practices related to the development of the “new media” in a local setting.  


The document focuses on the global context of technology today, in which power is found in the management of information and in the available technology. To illustrate this situation, Duque constructs a faceoff between the different players in this “media war.” On the one hand, he points out the “aristocrats of high tech” (Amazon, Ebay, and Microsoft, etc.), and on the other, he identifies the “dot-communists” (developers of free software, Creative Commons, and the Linux operating system, etc.). The writer states that these players participate in a constant symbolic conflict to strengthen their hegemonic power positions. He understands this as an element linked to knowledge, although he makes an interesting distinction when he defines two types of thinking linked to establishing these positions: “the unique model” and “the critical model.” Duque contrasts the unique model established by the First World with the model constructed in the Third World (critical). Using reiterative methods drawn from their own lives, Third World players are always in search of a different kind of globalization… a globalization that is social, cultural, grass roots, and responsible. The author believes that Latin America must focus its desires on the construction of this kind of globalization, based on a critical perspective. 


Alejandro Duque is an artist and professor. He has developed media approaches using video and various web-based technologies; in addition, he participated in exhibitions such as Net art Colombia: es feo y no le gusta el cursor, organized by Colombia’s Banco de la República (2007, which used to be available at, as well as the project Victims’ Symptom (2008 available at Duque was also a contributor to the prestigious journal Leonardo (2001).

Jorge Luis Vaca Forero
Universidad de los Andes, Bogota, Colombia
Reproduced with permission of Alejandro Duque J., Seon, Switzerland