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.
This article critiques the choices of the II Certamen Nacional de Investigaciones Visuales [Second National Visual Arts Research Competition] (Buenos Aires, Argentina 1971). It details the irregularities regarding the dissemination of the jury’s decision, the delay in the opening of the exhibition, and the censorship exercised over the Grand Prize of Honor awarded to both Made in Argentina, by Ignacio Colombres and Hugo Pereyra, as well as Celda [Cell] by Gabriela Bocchi and Jorge de Santa María. The article also refers to the initiatives of the artists of the SAAP, Sociedad Argentina de Artistas Plásticos, in relation to the aforementioned press release and their attendance at the Salas Nacionales de Exposición on opening day, although the Salón did not open its doors as scheduled.
The Salón Nacional de Artes Plásticas [National Salon for the Visual Arts] of Argentina was founded in 1911; its regulations varied over time, depending on the needs [of the moment]. The Salón Nacional for the years 1968 and 1969 included a section called “Visual Arts Research.” The category sought to include the new formats of experimental art (kinetic objects, Pop art, and the like). In 1970 and 1971, it led to the implementation of Certamen Anual de Investigaciones Visuales.
The Certamen Nacional de Investigaciones Visuales—which was held during the de facto government of General Alejandro Agustín Lanusse (1971–73)—resulted in the censorship of the artworks that had won the Grand Prize and the First Prize. By means of Executive Order 5696/71, the authorities excluded those prize-winning works from the exhibition, stating they were “not accepted” due to their “manifest ideological intent.” Thus they declared the grand and first prizes awarded by the jury null and void. These deeds fostered the repudiation of artists as well as some cultural organizations, and gave rise to various legal actions.
Así was a magazine founded by Héctor Ricardo García. The publication went through various periods and during the 1970s, it reported on general interest topics with a certain degree of sensationalism.
This article was selected because it documents the censorship of the II Certamen de Investigaciones Visuales in 1971; it is linked to the series of reactions that this event provoked among artists, intellectuals and the public who denounced the lack of freedom of expression as well as the censorship that prevailed during the military administration.