The editorial categories are research topics that have guided researchers during the recovery phase and continue to be the impetus behind the Documents Project’s digital archive and the Critical Documents book series. Developed by the project’s Editorial Board, each of the teams analyzed this framework and adapted it to their local contexts in developing their research objectives and work plans during the Recovery Phase. Learn more on the Editorial Framework page.
The essay “Visión panorámica de las nuevas cartografías. Los años setenta: se borran los límites” is the first chapter of the monographic book by Zuleiva Vivas on the life and work of Claudio Perna. In it, the author provides an overview of the conceptual artist’s career, discussing the different techniques he used, specially photography and film as mediums to produce a conceptual body of work. Vivas asserts that, for Perna, communication and education were primordial concerns that took precedence over aesthetic outcome. She mentions the solo and group shows that featured his art, as well as his joint projects with other artists of his generation. Vivas discusses the outstanding characteristics of Venezuelan art from every decade since the mid-20th century, but especially from the seventies, when Perna was particularly active and influential. Marta Traba and Juan Calzadilla’s theses on Venezuelan art form the theoretical bases for Vivas’s argument; she cites fragments of Perna’s Autocurriculum [Self-Curriculum].
The essay “Visión panorámica de las nuevas cartografías. Los años setenta: se borran los límites” is the opening chapter of the book La desaparición de los límites. Claudio Perna: aportes para el estudio del arte latinoamericano actual by curator Zuleiva Vivas (b. 1951). The text provides an overview of a number of topics pertinent to Perna and to Venezuelan art and its relationship with the greater Latin American and international contexts—topics that Vivas addresses in detail throughout the book. This first chapter contains key biographical information; it enumerates the range of media the artist used and his philosophical and academic interests and influences. This opening chapter summarizes the outstanding features of Venezuelan art in particular and Latin American art in general in the second half of the 20th century. While earlier texts by Marta Traba and by Juan Calzadilla provide Vivas with a theoretical foundation, she discriminatingly selects quotes from writings by Perna himself in the manuscript known as Autorriculum of which there are only three copies. Vivas describes Perna as an artist infected with Traba’s “restless Latin Americanist spirit.” He was desperately concerned with creating a viable and historical social model that, to the extent possible, would be independent. Perna formulated that model during the seventies and eighties, when a new generation of creators emerged, one that understood its work from a less personal and more skeptical perspective devoid, perhaps, of any political commitment. Perna was always more concerned with the “process of producing” the work than with the work itself. Vivas insists that Perna considered himself “a communicator” rather than an artist. For other texts on the artist, see Margarita D’Amico’s “1: Hoy es arte lo que no era” (doc. no. 1068360); Luis Enrique Pérez-Oramas’s “El autocurrículum de Claudio Perna, escultura social y novela hiperrealista” (doc. no. 1161917); Roberto Guevara’s “Claudio Perna o cómo ser libre en la marginalidad” (doc. no. 1080814); Elsa Flores’s untitled text [Vivir quiere decir dejar huellas…]” (doc. no. 1063156); María Elena Ramos’s “Arte - idea – geografía” (doc. no. 1080766); among others.