For the final session of Siembra in kurimanzutto, the Argentinean artist Mariana Telleria exhibits a record of her intervention Las noches de los días / The Nights of the Days (2014)for which she displays a device constructed expressly for Siembra 34.
One morning, in August of 2014, the city of Rosario—the third largest city in Argentina by population—awoke in an upheaval: the traditional Museo Municipal de Bellas Artes Juan B. Castagnino had changed the usual color of its exterior and was
painted entirely black. Months prior, Telleria had received an invitation to participate in Ampliación / Broadening, a collective exhibit curated by Leandro Comba. T he title itself already suggested the direction the artist would take.
She sent an email to the curator describing her proposal:
I want to paint the exterior of the museum black, Broadening
will reach as far as the City Council sessions, that is, if we
really want to Broaden! T his is a broadening conceived of as
expansion, as echo, as resonance… I’m interested in exploring
the more abstract aspects of the idea, its condition as
signifier and its impact in terms of mass reception…
I propose an event that occurs every 24 hours; from day to
night the form appears and disappears, to reveal the two
extremes of the act: to achieve a formal diurnal plenitude
until its chameleonic melting away with the dark of night.
For a time, the artist’s name was unknown, the artistic intention was anonymous, the symbolic spectre expanded, generating tremendous confusion as to the nature of the intervention. How to know whether the change in color had
been commissioned by the State, by a business, or by some strategic hybrid between the two? “Architecture/art or Vandalism?”, “Art or a Lack of Respect”, the media wondered.
What Las noches de los días / The Nights of the Days did, in addition to calling to attention to what was already there and even make it to the newspaper’s frontpage, was to re-establish, by way of a violent disruption, the existence of
the public—in all the complex force actively constructed by society.
The effect of public opinion was a fundamental aspect of the work. The reactions, many of which were guided by false and unfounded claims, were dissimilar and extreme. The artist was accused, among other things, of being a savage usurper, of being subversive, and of destroying architectural patrimony using public funds.
Telleria took it upon herself to compile and archive all of the available material and in 2017, the project extended into the publication of 100 pages in the form of a tabloid, which included everything from all-out pitched battles on social media, to newspaper articles, to op-eds and reader commentaries from news websites to the visitors’ book at the museum. With Siembra 34, Mariana Telleria offers a musergraphic device that documents—by way of formal and visual arts resources—that experience in 2014.
In the hope of finding an equilibrium between the lyrical dimension and the political dimension of Las noches de los días / The Nights of the Days, this device will also take on the function of a container for the new edition of the publication which will be available to the public.