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.
In this text for the sixth Bienal Salvador Valero de Arte Popular (Trujillo, 1999), Aníbal Ortizpozo reflects on the status of folk art in Venezuela, where, in his judgment, it has been relegated to the second tier in comparison to the so-called “cultured art” that is spreading across the Venezuelan capital, defended by the “artistic administrative bureaucracy of the State” and managed by “modern curators” with the intention of “educating” the people of the provinces. Given this situation, Ortizpozo expresses his satisfaction regarding the importance the biennial has achieved (despite the institutional and bureaucratic obstacles), establishing itself as a space for the comparison of production, distribution, sale, and consumption methods of “folk art.”
The importance of this document, written by Chilean artist and educator Aníbal Ortizpozo (b. 1937), based in Venezuela since 1973, stems from its treatment of the most discussed topic among sociologists, anthropologists, and critics: the validity of the conceptual differences between “folk art” and “cultured art.” Ortizpozo also points out the current need to review the cultural policies of the state, with an eye to modifying them so that they become more favorable to the “recuperation and re-contextualization of the artistic expressions linked to the traditional life and community.”
For Ortizpozo’s earlier reflections on other Salvador Valero biennials, see the text published in 1991 “El árbol no nos deja ver el bosque: reflexiones en el marco de la Tercera Bienal Salvador Valero” [see ICAA digital archive (doc. no. 1166270)].