Allora & Calzadilla ‘Vieques Videos 2003 – 2011,’ at Lisson Gallery, London, 23rd November 2011 – 14th January 2012.
Allora & Calzadilla, Under Discussion, 2005. Film still, single channel colour video projection with sound, 6.14mins. [Image source: davidrager.org]
Jenifer Allora and Guillermo Calzadilla have, since 2000, collaborated with local civil rights activists on the island of Vieques in order to stage multi-faceted artistic interventions relating to ecological, environmental and social issues concerning the U.S. Navy’s occupation and use of two thirds of the terrain as a bomb-testing site 1941 – 2003. It took the resultant death of civilian security guard, David Sanes after a rogue test-bomb in 1999 to capture the attention of the world media, prompting the transfer of just under 18000 acres of the Island to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Services between the years 2001 – 2003. In 2005 the area became “Vieques National Wildlife Refuge,” meaning that the land was still not handed back to civil municipality. To add further insult to injury, quite literally, the new status of the land as preserved provided an excuse not to address the ongoing contamination of the air, water and soil affecting the entire island. [1.]