Colonial Practices and Cultural Repression by the Municipality against the Community Museum of the Valle de Xico, but “It Is Our 25th Anniversary and We Are Still Here.”
The Valle de Xico Community Museum in the State of Mexico celebrates twenty-five years of resistance in 2021. Maria Thereza Alves has worked with the museum since 2009, and through collaborations she made the installation The Return of a Lake. The museum was closed by the municipality in 2019, by what the community considers an illegal act. The museum requests dissemination of this situation. As a result, further collaborations resulted in performative works and the ongoing project Son del Pueblo, an attempt through social media to not only remake artifacts that are no longer accessible to the community but also make the collection available beyond Xico.
Alves is a Brazilian artist. She participated in the Sydney Biennale (2020), Toronto Biennale (2019), Manifesta 12 in Palermo and 7 in Trento, São Paulo Biennale (2016 and 2010), and others. She had a solo exhibit at MUAC in Mexico City and a survey exhibit at Centro Andaluz de Arte Contemporáneo in Seville, and she received the Vera List Prize for Art and Politics in 2016–18. In 1978, as a member of the International Indian Treaty Council, Alves presented on human rights abuses of the Indigenous population of Brazil at the UN Human Rights Commission in Geneva. Alves was also a founding member of the Green Party of São Paulo in 1987. Recent books include Recipes for Survival, published by University of Texas Press, and Thieves and Murderers in Naples: A Brief History on Families, Colonization, Immense Wealth, Land Theft, Art and the Valle de Xico Community Museum in Mexico, published by Di Paolo Edizioni.
Presented by the Berkeley Center for New Media and the Center for Latin American Studies. Cosponsored by Spanish & Portuguese, the Center for Race and Gender, the Arts Research Center, and The American Indian Graduate Program.
Participants and topics are subject to change; visit Berkeley Arts + Design (artsdesign.berkeley.edu) for the most up-to-date series information.