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Skip to main content. Log In Sign Up. Theatre on Screen, Cinema on Stage: The Transmedial and the Communitarian Joanna Page Egon Wolff Pedro Bravo-Elizondo Any discussion of 21st century Argentine cinema simi- larly touches theatrical motifs and prisms.
Dramatists like Walter Jakob and Santiago Loza also work in film, as an actor and director, respectively. The essays featured in this collection point to wider currents and exchanges. Romina Paula and Lola Arias work as performers, writers, and directors across both stage and screen cultures.
Alejo Moguillansky works as a writer, director, and editor in cinema, but theatre spills into his films through plotting, performance, and intertextuality, disrupting their surface realism in playful, impish ways.
The boundaries between these art forms, as the spatial configurations of Buenos Aires indicate, are hugely porous. Productions shift from venue to venue.
Minefield and El loro y el cisne both show this process at work. This lavanderl also spills over into the multifarious roles that the artists featured in this collection occupy: The stages are varied. Com- munity—what it means, how to forge, and resde it—is key to the works covered in the volume. Community, of course, was central to the oldest documented theatrical cultures of Western Europe. A way for a community to debate the key issues of the time—issues of governance, ethics, and responsibility, of history, memory, and representation.
As with the ancient Greek theatre of Dionysus, the stages discussed in this issue offer the space to debate the foundations on which post-dictatorship Argentina has been built.
Indeed, as with the Greeks, modes of rewriting the past as a mode of coming to terms with its fissures and vicissitudes looms large jofge many of the works discussed. Processes of historicisation, of thinking through the relationship between thinking and making, of how we relate to our inheritance and the ways in which we lavajdero it run through all the essays.
Forms of representation are tried and tested, twisted and reformed. Debating cultural heritage and inherited ideals, the film seeks to position cultural carceel as sitting beyond an Argentine trope, within a wider, shared canon of work that travels across national boundaries in a process of interaction and intersection.
Xiaobin arrives from mainland China to join her family with- out knowing Spanish.
They isolate themselves in the laundromat they run, but she is determined to learn Spanish—putting away some of her earnings from the supermarket where she works to enroll at a language school.
The other Chinese members of her Spanish class are both a cardel and a chorus, jorgf the latter case commenting on her predicament and articulating how com- munity may operate outside her close-knit, secluded family.
Her contact with Vijay, an Indian migrant, adds a further layer to the narrative, a way of testing out her new identity through a new language. A joint venture between the Institute of Latin American Studies and the Institute of Modern Languages Research, both part of the University of London, the screenings were open to the general pub- lic and were designed to explore the dialogues and exchanges taking place between the so-called New Argentine Cinema and the less-well-known New Argentine Theatre.
Diccionario-Inverso-de-La-Lengua-Espanola | Marco Mora –
The series was the first time that such a range of diverse experimental productions had been shown in the United Kingdom alongside conversations with the young directors, who were either present at the venue or interviewed via video conferences on the day of the screenings.
This special issue builds on those conversations, identifying an upcom- ing genre in contemporary Argentine cultural production, one that is marked by a hybrid aesthetics, a blending of fact and fiction, a playful spirit, and transnational dialogues that take place on both stage and screen.
The vari- ous contributions included in this publication highlight the innovative uses of technology, humour, live music, and dance in this up-and-coming body of work, one that, over the last few years, has challenged the rigidity of generic boundaries.
While most of these pieces were screened at Senate House, some of them, such as Campo minado Minefieldwhich debuted in in the UK, were included especially for this issue. It is our contention that together these works exemplify the emergence of a fresh and exciting generational, transnational, and trans-disciplinary voice within Argentine performing arts. As Lavanderp Andermann has pointed out: In con- trast to the arguable exhaustion of New Argentine Cinema, a community of Argentine theatre-practitioners and young filmmakers has fashioned a unique and lively creative space within both the domestic market and major international festivals.
In the current post-New Argentine Cinema period, this collection of essays addresses the way in which cinema and theatre have been experiencing a fruitful exchange of interests, directors, writers, castings, and audiences, giving room to a new circuit that renovates and enhances both art forms. Many of the films and theatrical plays studied in this issue could argu- ably be considered enhanced forms of biodrama.
However, they have ac- quired new lavnadero more sophisticated individual characteristics as well as a collective sense of belonging lavancero status. For that reason, we suggest that they not only be analyzed in relation to the original biodrama trend but also that they be seen as having their own distinct characteristics.
In many cases, the autobiographi- cal playfully re-enters the realm of the fictional, simultaneously regaining an extra testimonial power. This enhanced form of truth resonates between stages and screens, generating novel forms of spectatorship.
In sum, cinema beyond New Argentine Cinema and theatre beyond bio- drama constitute the main shifting paths along which this new body of work can be traced. To define the main features of the pieces that comprise this new genre, we could arguably say that they are neither completely testimo- nial nor autobiographical accounts but rather auto-fictional lx.
They are made out of the fabric of the real but are more playful and imagi- nary than realistic. They are ultimately subjective but also highly political and communitarian.
The articles included in this issue also show to what extent the Kirch- nerist years included a performative element. Despite no- table exceptions, such as laa escraches organized by the children lavandeero the dis- appeared within the group HIJOS Hijos por la Identidad y la Justicia contra el Olvido y el Silenciothe s was mainly a decade when politics be- came a spectacle that people watched passively on television screens from the comfort of their homes: By contrast, during the Kirchnerist era, the multitudes resurfaced, exhibiting a joyful sense of coming together.
This highly controversial period brought back the idea jirge remaking the street and using bodies to re-appropriate public spaces with political and affective encounters. Simultaneously, the period also became the contested arena of many confrontations between defenders and detrac- tors of the government, often revealing political and social tensions that had been tamed but remained latent in Argentine society.
It is worth noting, however, that even in the political context of recent years, most of the directors whose work is addressed here managed to re- main loyal to some sort of aesthetic autonomy. The autonomy of subjects and styles among this wave of directors became a sort of aesthetic platform that subtly addressed, if not ignored, the demands from many Kirchnerist artists and practitioners for a political revi- sion of carcrl past.
This apparent disengagement has been, paradoxically, their silent political platform. A New Hybrid Genre The new genre that we identify in this issue involves the multi-layered circulation of subjects, styles, and techniques in between cinema and the- atre. Filmmakers explore dramaturgy, while theatre directors make incursions into film production. Similarly, ac- tors from both fields move from one territory to the other, bringing to each medium techniques and styles learned as part of their respective training and their work on stage or in front of the camera.
The use of new technologies and new media in both fields enhances the generational mark of this body of work and blurs the boundaries between virtual realities and desdde physical realm in their narratives. Fourth, the recurrence of a play- ful and comical style nurtures the self-referential imprint of these produc- tions in contrast with the dry sense of humour typical of many neo-realist New Argentine Cinema productions. Fifth, this cross-pollination between film and theatre generates new and wider audiences committed sesde the spirit of experimentation that characterizes the genre.
Thus, the spectators become crucial allies of these productions. From Buenos Aires to the Global World Together with the aforementioned attributes, this up-and-coming circuit of practitioners has built a sense of belonging, for the most part related to and engaging with the megacity of Buenos Aires. Indeed, most of the artists and directors have studied and some- times lived in different European and US cities, acquiring new languages and familiarizing themselves with the cultural landscapes and affective id- iosyncrasies of each place.
In his series of Shakespearean comedies Rosalinda, Viola, La Princesa de Franciathese global classics are relocated to the Argentine capital and reinterpreted from a gendered and sometimes queer perspective. The theme of globalized identities, polyglots, and transnational places is also explicitly tackled in works such as Airport KidsMucamasand Ciudades paralelas As a re- sult, this body of work crosses interdisciplinary jogge at the same time it introduces emergent Latin American paradigms to the English-speaking world.
Given the transnational nature of the corpus, many of these produc- tions raise important questions about the act of making theatre in marginal locations, as well as questions about translation and trans-culturation.
More than that, these works also manage to play back their own sense of precari- ousness and occasional marginality, transforming it into the focal point of a rebellious and sometimes ludicrous fight that playfully destabilizes gender positions, locations, and accounts of the self beyond trauma.
In his latest film, El escarabajo de oro, Moguillansky blends film and theatre by featuring a community of friends and artists who appear as themselves. To some extent, this form of production can be seen as a strategy that confronts a precari- ous network of funding.
And he goes on: A Novel Subjectivity and a Feeling of Community One of the main hypotheses present in these lagandero is that this genera- tion of artists eesde and filmmakers but also performers and musi- cians has revealed the emergence of a new type of subjectivity.
They were born during or after the dictatorship and are mostly contempo- raries of the generation of the children of the disappeared, but they have reacted to the resonances of trauma in their own terms. As their productions show, they are capable of being playful, irreverent, and even narcissistic.
To some extent, they have explored that recent history mostly as outsiders or bystanders. The freedom of playing with postco- lonial identities and bringing into play more fluid gender fantasies and real lives is another focal point of this new wave of prestigious directors. This renovation might also be a way of attracting funding from festivals abroad and appealing to international audiences.
In this struggle, they have also transformed the materiality of the local traumatic past into fictional layers of transnational tropes that circulate and provide new bursts of energy to their mischievous productions. SPRING 17 Some critics have accused this ludic approach to the traumatic past of being self-absorbed, disrespectful to victims, egoistic, and apolitical. The authors of these works have been also accused of being a bunch of elitist children.
However, it would be unfair and narrow-minded to reduce their complex body of work to such a judgmental and moralistic view. This new group of directors has instead managed to bring to light a new body of work that blurs the boundaries between theatre and cinema, reading and writing, producing and directing.
They are also the free heirs of a traumatized gen- eration who have learned to tell stories and approach the real with a new affective tone. Coinciding with a political period that transformed memory into a national and official state platform, they have managed to reinvent themselves within global theatrical trends and markets, at the same time reinventing updated narratives of collective memory and challenging posi- tions of gender, politics, and transnational belonging.
In sum, this new body of work defines a generation of artists who are not afraid of playing with disparate materials and of making fiction out of them. Moreover, this group of directors lavvandero a way of working and producing that has a certain element of camaraderie. Thus, most of their productions become an exaltation of friendship and a space for joy and experimentation. For Arias, we are all somehow performers in our everyday lives and the re-enactment of real lives on stage highlights that performative nature of our existence.
Sosa argues that the enfolded puzzle of screens, stages, drsde lives at stake in the film sheds light on an upcoming hybrid genre within Argentine contemporary cultural production. In particular, she examines how the local version of a classic ballet fable provides a playful overlap between documentary and fiction, simultaneously calling into question tra- ditional boundaries across the arts. Ultimately, she argues that the never-ending layers of documentary and fiction address the aftermath of the dictatorship with a new affective and generational language.
In this context, she argues that these bodily encounters stand as an exploration of broader intensities that awak- ened during the Kirchnerist administrations, which witnessed a rediscov- ered passion for the collective. For Ceresa, in the task of redefining identities or re-writing classical texts, repetition and iteration play a central role as a way of de-naturalising habits and discourses.
For Blejmar, Arias not only successfully overcomes the risks that often accompany bio- graphical pieces such as this one—over-identification, mimesis, and appro- priation—with the aid of playful distancing devices, but also demonstrates how theatre can become an affective space of empowerment and enuncia- tion in which the marginal and vulnerable subject takes centre stage, thereby gaining visibility and producing an empathic connection with the audience.
Through a careful exploration of the affective land- scapes, cartographies, and geographies of the postwar proposed by the film, Depetris Chauvin highlights another main feature of this corpus, namely the transformation, after the coup, of the politically tense relationship between the public and the private, the lavandeto and the intimate. This telefilm was the result of a public initiative led by Argentine Jorgf Television inwhich brought together seven pairs of film and theatre directors with the idea of creating a new collective piece.
This non-normative piece features theatre lessons for children led by an eccentric professor. Ludic and strangely per- formative, Entrenamiento has moments of recklessness that make the piece not only an improbable acting class for child-actors but also a school of life for its entire audience.
In the context of this issue, the interview marks the beginning of a timely process of exchange between theatre and film, one that has now become lavanedro more organic and that shapes the cross pollina- tion of fields and disciplines that has marked subsequent years.
As the contributions of this issue demonstrate, the establishment of af- fective bonds between directors, performers, and spectators not only speaks about a novel genre in the performative arts, but also about new political communities of resistance against social fragmentation, against the mere pursuit of financial benefits, and against the resurgence of neoliberal forces in Argentina.