montsejoseba on Fri, 17 Aug 2007 21:22:34 +0200 (CEST)

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<nettime-ann> Montse Arbelo and Joseba Franco , the Nomads project on CCCB Barcelona


NOMADAS Oriente Occidente 
by Montse Arbelo and Joseba Franco

c/Montealegre 5

 Centro de Cultura Contemporánea, CCCB, presents the project NOMADAS Oriente Occidente (NOMADS East West) by the artists Montse Arbelo and Joseba Franco.

Since the earliest humans stood upright millions of years ago, impelled by curiosity and the urge to find out what lay beyond the horizon, our capacity for imagination has never stopped growing. That impulse was a revolution for the entire species. It implied formulating an abstraction, thinking it through and setting out to find it - a new dynamic that changed the future of humankind. That's how we've invented the world, my naming it.

The concepts "East" and "West" represent much more than what our eyes allow us to perceive. Only through the sum of all our senses can we approach two worlds that are so seemingly distant and different from each other. The collective imaginary takes us back to cultures that, for millennia, have evolved in disparate ways. However, in today?s world it has become notoriously difficult to find a clear differentiating line. The West has exported its lifestyle and traditions all over the world, penetrating the East to such an extent that, no matter how you look at it, a convergence of the futures of both seems inescapable. Likewise, the East has become part of our daily life in a multitude of ways: spirituality, culture, sports, food, technology...

Through this project, we want to explore this time that gives coherence to all human forms of _expression_, in the East and the West, through the overall patterns on which myths and reality have been constructed. While there may be no match for transversality in our day and age, the transubstantiation of reality into multiple and varied forms allows us to see the vision of the East reflected in the mirror of the West and vice versa. There are no certainties and no clear boundaries exist.

NOMADAS 00-10 is a project that we began in 2000 and that stretches over a decade. It is the frame of reference that connects all of our projects, as well as a way of merging art with life. This path, which disrupts borders and prejudices, fuels the way we see and understand the world today, mixing cultures and experiences, smells and tastes.

The aim of this journey is to experience all the countries in the world by organising exhibitions and conferences and working on projects with transnational groups in order to create collaborative links with artists and institutions, cultural agents and different societies.

With our laptops and still and video cameras, we wander through a world full of contradictions, sharing and assimilating cultures, and learning human biodiversity on the streets. Regardless of skin colour, language, culture, economic status and any other differentiation factor we could come up with, we confirm that we are more similar than we are different.

In an almost linear trajectory from New York to Tokyo, passing through most European countries, China and the Philippines, we've tried to capture the rhythm and daily life of the places visited.

It has been a journey of over two years, which have allowed us to assimilate and accept that we live in a single, complex and ever-changing world with multiple realities.

As in a hall of mirrors, we've seen ourselves reflected in numerous stories. We are actors and spectators both in a multi-polar world. Imagination has been captured and expressed in over 50 hours of video recordings and thousands of photographs, creating a mosaic, a puzzle that we try to put in order.

The  project will be exhibited at differents Spanish and Internationals Museums.


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