The ten-part documentary series Plástica [arte contemoráneo en Colombia] is one of the most enlightening visual documents on the Colombian art scene in recent decades. Initially produced for public television, the series was later compiled in the DVD presented by this document. The aim of the project is to present art representative of each of the thematic clusters the project encompasses. To that end, research included interviews with curators, critics, journalists, and members of the general public, which together, provide a context for the works analyzed, many of which were produced using novel materials and techniques that deserved a thorough review.
This project constitutes one of the recent efforts geared to the formation of art audiences. The contents of this educational tool discuss forms of artistic expression that gained ground in the nineties: performance, installation, experimental photography, electronic art, and others. Although, due to its format, the project does not afford deep analysis of the topics discussed, it does provide an apt overview of the visual arts from 1990 to 2005. The titles of the DVD’s ten chapters are: (1)“Art Is a Paper Tiger: Embracing Conceptualism”;(2) “Art Is Not What It’s Painted to Be: Painting and Drawing”; (3)“Objects in Transit: Sculpture and Object Art”;(4)“The Conquest of Space: Public Art”; (5)“Architecture of the Memory: Installation”; (6)“Focuses and Trips: Art and Photography”;(7)“What a Body Can Do: Performance”;(8)“The Subversive Image: Video Art”; (9) “Recycled Technologies: Electronic Art”; and (10) “Is This Art?: Appropriations.”
The ten twenty-five-minute chapters can be viewed on the website of 4direcciones audio–visual (http://4direcciones.tv/plastica-arte-contemporaneo-en-colombia/), a company dedicated to the production of audiovisual materials on culture and the environment. Two members of EL Vicio Producciones, Diana Rico and Richard Decaillet, created and directed 4direcciones audio–visual. Significantly, El Vicio productions came into being as a collective of visual artists from different parts of Colombia; its first projects date from 1998. In this project, the group explored the documentary genre to provide the general public with a way to approach and to understand artistic production that breaks with traditional formulations and techniques.