Cuadernos are online curations of multimedia materials focused on particular topics or bodies of work relating to performance and politics in the Americas. Combining photos, videos, text, bibliographies, and audio recordings, these collections are designed to make connections between disciplines, to serve as a research resource for artists and scholars, and to solicit exchange and additional materials. Each Cuaderno is a work in progress.
- Tome is an online authoring tool that facilitates long-form publishing in an immersive, media-rich environment. Built on the WordPress framework and in collaboration with the Hemispheric Institute, Tome features a suite of custom plugins that empowers scholars, students, and artists to create innovative born-digital work. Recent Tome publications include El Ciervo Encantado: An Altar in the Mangroves (Lillian Manzor and Jaime Gómez Triana), Art, Migration, and Human Rights: A collaborative dossier by artists, scholars, and activists on the issue of migration in southern Mexico, Villa Grimaldi (Diana Taylor), and six gestures (peter kulchyski).
- Scalar is a free, open source authoring and publishing platform that’s designed to make it easy for authors to write long-form, born-digital scholarship online. Scalar enables users to assemble media from multiple sources and juxtapose them with their own writing in a variety of ways, with minimal technical expertise required. Scalar also gives authors tools to structure essay- and book-length works in ways that take advantage of the unique capabilities of digital writing, including nested, recursive, and non-linear formats. The platform also supports collaborative authoring and reader commentary.
- The Hemispheric Institute is a multilingual institution, and proposals may be submitted in English, Spanish, and/or Portuguese. We also accept and encourage proposals for projects in any other language of the Americas, as long as they are submitted together with a full translation (publishable standard) of your proposal into one of these three languages. Interested scholars, artists, and activists should submit a short proposal (see specific language requirements above) of 1-2 pages, single space, which includes: A description of the intellectual content A description of how much support you imagine you will need in building your Cuaderno A description of the proposed media content Media samples (please include at least 1 sample per “type” of media that you plan to include i.e. photos, video, sound, etc) Copyright statements for media A sample translation(s) of 1 paragraph drawn from your project’s intellectual content into any and all languages that you would like your Cuaderno to appear in beyond its “original” language. Please ensure you submit translations of publishable standard, and note that HemiPress cannot provide translation services. All proposals should be submitted as Microsoft Word documents, in Times New Roman size 12 font, using Chicago Notes-Bibliography citation styles ONLY Accepted video formats include: .mov, .mp4; accepted photo formats include .dng, .cr2, .jpg (.jpg must be greater than 1MB); accepted audio formats include .mp3, .aiff, .wav; the only accepted zipped file format is .zip Files may be shared via Hard Drive, Data Key, WeTransfer, or GoogleDrive Please make sure to include captions and credits for all media in a separate Word document with corresponding file names. Please format captions as follows: Image Title. Description (if applicable). Photo: Photographer’s name, Date (just year unless specificity is required). All proposals will be internally reviewed at the Hemispheric Institute and authors of selected projects will be notified with next steps.
This cuaderno features original scholarly essays, performance texts, and photo & video documentation to chronicle the career and performance practice of Costa Rican artist Elia Arce. Focusing on performances made in the United States during “her voluntary exile,” Elia Arce examines the artist’s use of her own body to explore themes of race, national identity, displacement, and belonging. Elia Arce is authored and edited by Anabelle Contreras Castro, with additional essays by Vivian Martínez Tabares Sergio Villena Fuego. Available in Spanish and English.
On September 26, 2014, a group of students from the Ayotzinapa Rural Teachers College, traveling by bus in Iguala, Guerrero, came under armed attack by police. The police abducted 43 of the students. They have not been seen since. Emily Pederson’s photographs capture the relentless struggle to find the missing 43, and amplify the demand for truth and justice that has reverberated across Mexico and the world.
Festive Devils of the Americas is dedicated to the research on and continuing iterations of fiestas, religious practices, and carnivals involving devils’ dances in the Americas. Their appearances help us to untangle and explore one of the most charged figures in history: a figure that carries the charge of “evil” and “play,” along with honor, faith, and collective action, simultaneously centering and diffusing the binary of good and evil.
At the Hemispheric Institute’s fifth Encuentro, “Performing ‘Heritage:’ Contemporary Indigenous and Community-Based Practices,” members of two indigenous communities in Brazil, the Kaiapó and the Maxacalí, staged performances that generated fascination, confusion, and considerable dialogue. This cuaderno presents audio-visual documentation and analysis of their participation in this event.
The Holy Terrors cuaderno is designed to augment and continually update the book Holy Terrors: Latin American Women Perform (Duke University Press, 2003). It provides an ever-expanding archive of visual materials (including videos, slide shows, and photos), performance texts, interviews, scholarly essays, bibliographies, and related links concerning the artists in the volume, as well as others. Please feel free to suggest new artists, contribute materials, or make comments about this site.
This cuaderno offers a chronological presentation of artistic actions in the Americas and corresponding historical events around world from 1957 to 2000. The overview it provides first appeared in 2008 as part of the exhibition catalog for Arte ≠ Vida: Actions by Artists of the Americas 1960-2000 in New York’s El Museo del Barrio. The Hemispheric Institute first digitized it in 2011 to accompany the 8.1 emisférica issue Performance ≠ Life.
Vachiam Eecha draws on Yoeme Indian language and aesthetics to demonstrate how one tribe in Mexico has combined religiosity, indigeneity, and ritual performance to assert sovereign control over its homeland. In exploring of the lives and practices of Yoeme people, this cuaderno works to examine collective memory, ethnographic performance, and the politics of representation in the virtual territory of the Internet.
Plaza Baquedano, also known as La Plaza Italia de Santiago, is the heart of Santiago de Chile, serving as a geographic and historic center of encounter in the city’s urban environment. This cuaderno offers interviews, architectural analysis, and historical information about the Plaza that together establish an overview of the various roles the space has played for those in the city and throughout Chile.
This cuaderno draws on text and archival photographs to chronicle the performance art practice of post-Mexican writer, artist, and activist Guillermo Gómez-Peña. By tracing his personal history and relationships as well as his past 30 years of theatrical, literary, political, and artistic engagement, Gómez-Peña contextualizes his work and demonstrates its relation both to his own life and to the main political and social events of the times.
“The Death of the Inca Atahualpa” is a collection of multiple representations—written, drawn, or enacted—created by communities of the Peruvian Andes. Compiled by a team of researchers, the materials in this cuaderno are meant to provide researchers and students with insight into a foundational colonial scene: the capture and death of the Inca Atahualpa.
This cuaderno was created by members of a course dedicated to examining the use of performance by state actors, oppositional groups, and artistic practitioners to solidify or challenge structures of power. Organized around eight key themes, it brings together images, videos, definitions, and original analyses in order to both investigate specific historical moments and paradigms of power and open up broader discussion on the intersections of performance, power, and resistance.
The Centro de Estudios Mapuche Pewma is a Spanish-language initiative of members of an Argentinian Puel Mapu Mapuche indigenous group, most of whom live in the province of Neuquén. This cuaderno serves as a collection of their primary documents and a space for scholars and community members to continue researching, documenting, and discussing different aspects of the Mapuche history, culture and language.
Drawing on texts and practices from colonial Mexico, this Spanish-language cuaderno discusses the wide variety of expressive behaviors within the country’s colonial societies, from the performing arts to civic and courtly festivities. Due to their public nature and their coded messages, these practices, as Toriz demonstrates, embedded a multiplicity of important, implied commentaries on power and political life.
“Intangible Heritage” is the product of a one-week conference on Intangible Heritage held in Cuernavaca, Mexico in 2003, over the course of which participants collaboratively investigated Day of the Dead celebrations. By considering these celebrations as performances, the group and the cuaderno they created offer insight into the ways that cultural memory is transmitted through social practices, customs, actions, and rituals.
In this cuaderno, Elizabeth McAllister draws on years of scholarship on and interest in Haitian culture in order to present a look at Rara festivals, societies, and music. The photographs and videos compiled here from McAllister’s time in Haiti also serve as a supplement her work in Rara! Vodou, Power, and Performance in Haiti and Its Diaspora (UC Press, 2002).
The Mapuche Campaign for Self-Representation was created in 2001 in order to redefine Machupe identity and reflect the diversity of the community in a national and global context. This cuaderno furthers that project by presenting a collection of texts and drawings aimed at both promoting self-knowledge in the Mapuche community and furthering its self-representation to an online audience.
Grupo Cultural Yuyachkani is an activist theater group with a 30-year history of performing in reaction to and defiance of political and economic policies in Peru. The collection of written and visual materials in this cuaderno are meant to present the origins and actions of this important theater group and link its work to the larger political and social history of Peru.
New Era Veterans is a transitional housing facility for previously homeless veterans in the Bronx. Its work includes providing shelter, counseling, and social services to residents, many of whom struggle with physical disabilities, psychological disorders, and addictions. The texts compiled in this cuaderno include poetry and prose written and performed by residents and recorded at the facility’s poetry group meetings.
This cuaderno presents five recently developed ethnographies of the Peruvian Amazon that problematize the processes of identity constitution and reconstitution in indigenous contexts. Using a performative frame, the main case studies use interviews, analytic essays, mapping, and historical texts to explore the Asháninka and Shipibo communities’ appropriation of speech related to bilingual education and the Internet.
Founded in 1988 by Cuban dancer, choreographer, and performer Marianela Boán, DanzAbierta is one of Cuba’s most prominent and innovative dance companies. Videos and photographs of its work as well as articles and reviews of it are compiled in this cuaderno, which serves as an introduction to the company for students, scholars, and artists and which is meant to further the international dispersal of Cuban dance and music traditions.
This cuaderno offers its visitors a brief tour of Peruvian history by exploring a selection of key moments, figures, and practices. The tour does not follow a liner route, though, but rather presents a series of fragments for the visitor to explore and creatively connect. Each of the organizing axes—characters, places, and representations—contains specific cases selected to provide insight into larger historical processes that have informed Peruvian life and culture.
“Repasos” studies the implicit relationship between art and politics (and between art and life) in Agusto Pinochet’s Chile. Through personal interviews with artists, performers, writers, and museum and gallery directors, it tells the story of the Escena and Avanzada and Colectivo Acciones de Arte specifically—two groups of artists and intellectuals who stayed in Chile during the years of military rule and “dared to gamble on a form of creativity.”
This cuaderno focuses on rumba as a transitory space and as a cartography of the Diaspora. The structure of the site is based on the rutos de la rumba: its different global routes, directions, and emergences and the forms it takes in each of its locations. In compiling rumbas and considering them geographically, “Los Rutos de la Rumba” explores their constant making and unmaking of place, nation, narration, and themselves.
“Sarhua” houses photographs of and Spanish-language texts about the eponymous indigenous community in the Peruvian Andes, which is comprised of painters whose paintings serve as gifts for couples building a home and are integrated into the beams of their roofs. This cuaderno tells the story of these beams’ history and brief international commercial popularity in the 1970s, ultimately underlining the importance of this age-old artistic form in Sarhua.
This cuaderno functions as an introduction to and collection of materials on HIJOS, an organization started in 1995 of the children of people who were disappeared during the Argentinian military dictatorship. The multimedia site explores their strategies, philosophies, and practices of resistance, placing them in the context of and in conversation with forms of political performance during the dictatorship itself.
Founded in 1969, the American Indian Community House (AICH) of New York City Performing Arts Department serves the important function of promoting and supporting Native American performing artists and providing them with a performance space to showcase their pieces. This cuaderno serves as an introduction to the work of the AICH and to the diverse collection of performance materials amassed by the Performing Arts Department.
Tepeyac Television Service (TTS) is a public television project formed by a group of Mexican migrants in New York City. Its fundamental goal is to facilitate access to video cameras for migrant workers whose voices are systematically silenced, allowing them to document their lives and communities. This cuaderno is meant to present and publicize the group’s work of defending migrants in the tri-state area and encouraging their creative expression and transnational dialogue.