We are delighted to announce our participation at Art Basel Miami Beach's Positions sector with a solo project by Paloma Contreras Lomas.
“Desolation tries to colonize you”
Area X is a place created by Jeff VanderMeer in his fantasy and sci-fi novel Annihilation, part of the literary trilogy Southern Reach, which was later adapted to cinema. The Area X is located in northern Florida and hosts a landscape otherness unknown to human beings.
The United States of America has generated its identity from different constructions of otherness, justifying interventionism from a constant threat to American homeland security. The warning of a possible death of the American dream has had different facets, which have infiltrated in American cinema deeply connected to the building of the nation-state of the USA.
The 20th Century flooded the screens with scaled, underground and communist monsters. Martians that came from the USSR or Jeff Goldblum, a 4th of July, containing a spaceship full of Latin American immigrants. They would eventually end up working illegally in his country, mowing perfectly landscaped lawns, trampled by smooth, Golden Retriever spies.
The 21st Century was inaugurated by the TV transmission of the terrorist highjack. Finally, Bush whispered in our occidentalized ear that evil no longer came from that Jupiterian android. Evil had a name and it hid in a remote location. In a lost cave in Afghanistan, far away from white gaze. Evil lived in the present, it didn’t come from the future to tell us anything. In fact, it lived in the landscape of the illegal. A landscape that hosts the guerrilla and the narc in the Middle East and in Latin America. It is there where Evil lives, according to the State and a good-mannered establishment. Morality between good and bad has dissipated for a long time.
Area X doesn’t represent a far away or interplanetary threat. It is the monstrosity or otherness that dwells in a dystopian present within one of the whiteness epicenters. One that is invaded by marginal communities that have turned into vast majorities.
Science Fiction that originates in Europe and the USA is flooded with the idea of the future. Either a Utopia or a dystopian prospect, there is an opportunity to imagine. In the Evil called undeveloped world, imagining the prediction of a possible private property is harder every day. It becomes more of a fantasy. The future never came, neither the chance to imagine it. Dystopia has stranded in the present.