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Thu Oct 22, 2015, 02:40 AM

A Pop-Up Art Community In The Amazon Highlights Peru’s Environmental Devastation

A Pop-Up Art Community In The Amazon Highlights Peru’s Environmental Devastation
by Laura Feinstein
October 19, 2015



Pop-up installations have become de riguer for the art world in recent years, setting an almost impossibly high bar for innovation. One creator, however, is challenging audiences to think bigger in terms of the medium—and much more rural. Each year Maxim Holland, an artist, curator and the originator of Tambo Films—Peru’s leading production service company, which frequently works on regional fixing for Discovery, National Geographic, and the BBC—chooses a new destination for his mysterious HAWAPI events. These independent happenings take artists and other cultural players deep into remote Peru to create site-specific projects in “challenging locations” that have been adversely effected by social, political, or environmental issues, and to create new and vibrant works. According to Holland: “Unlike Colombia or Argentina, in Peru the only city with any art scene is Lima.” This frustration caused him to look outside the capital for new ways to produce work, spurring the annual HAWAPI 10-day residency. In the past, artists have created public murals, performances, and installations in collaboration with the local community, later creating an exhibition to showcase these works. The projects, most importantly, give viewers a rare glimpse into Peruvian societies for the most part largely off-the-grid.



HAWAPI was founded in 2012 by Holland as a response to his disillusionment with the formal gallery and street art worlds. “For years I was interested in art, often guerrilla or street, outside of Lima,” he says. “By 2012 (street art) had started to become this sort of fan-boy culture, where artists just traveled from cool city to cool city, painting murals in the gentrified neighborhoods. The original idea was to shake that up.” Word started to get out regarding Holland’s plans, and more artists signed on. Since 2012, HAWAPI residencies have been held in three locations: Cerro de Pasco, a heavily scarred, polluted and remote mining city in the Peruvian Andes; Pisco, a coastal city still struggling to recover from Peru’s largest earthquake in 2005; and Pariacaca, a rapidly dissipating glacier that brought global attention to the effects of climate change on South America.



“Cerro de Pasco was unlike any other city I've ever been to,” says Holland of his inaugural destination. “It had a very long mining history, since pre-Colombian times. But in the 1970’s American companies began open-pit mining. Now the city has grown into an open-air mineral-mine, with a pit right in the middle of town,” he continues. “Slowly the community is being pushed out into the hills to make room for the expanding mine.” As a result of this socially irresponsible mining there are “huge piles of mine waste literally sitting in people's back yards,” and numerous serious societal and environmental hazards have been wreaked on the area. HAWAPI, with its immersive projects and documentation, hopes to shine a light on the hope and potential behind these jarring topographies.



More:
http://magazine.good.is/articles/pop-up-art-community-in-the-amazon-highlights-perus-devastation

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Reply A Pop-Up Art Community In The Amazon Highlights Peru’s Environmental Devastation (Original post)
Judi Lynn Oct 2015 OP
emsimon33 Oct 2015 #1

Response to Judi Lynn (Original post)

Thu Oct 22, 2015, 04:01 AM

1. I witnessed this first hand when I was there

The illegal gold-mining is also devastating the country.

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