Artist: Eugenio Cornejo
Curators: Marisa Cornejo and Bernardo de Castro
Place: Casa Memoria José Domingo Cañas, Santiago, Chile
Date: November 2013
For the exhibition El Ancestro ( The Ancestor), Cornejo brings back to Chile in a portafolio by plane the graphic materials her father produced in exile to exhibit them in Casa Memoria José Domingo Cañas. This place with an emblematic story and few blocks from her family home was used as a secret prison by the D.I.N.A. (Dirección de Inteligencia Nacional) from 1974 until the end of the Pinochet regime in 1990. There people lost their lives after being tortured, 43 people “disappeared” until now and the atrocities commited there are beyond human comprehension. Before having being transformed into a detention centre, Casa Memoria used to be a normal house in Ñuñoa, a middle class neighbourhood of Santiago de Chile. Once the dictatorial regime of Augusto Pinochet finished it took more than 10 years of social struggle of human right activists resisting gentrification to transform this place into a memorial public space.
El Ancestro is the first exhibition of the graphic production of Eugenio Cornejo (1940-2002) kept for 35 years in a personal archive in exile produced as an affective artistic practice for memory and justice. His graphic work in this place gives voice to the silenced victims building a new layer of knowledge and meaning to our story.
The exhibition El Ancestro was produced with the help of Bernardo de Castro and the support of my mother and his wife Nora Gatica Krug.
The exhibition was finished with an engraving workshop were collectivelly the public reprinted some of Eugenio’s engraving plates with the help of artist Lola Arias putting in action a transgenerational reparation practice.