Claudia Fernández: I have also worked on an another type of work which is a work where the aesthetic stays… it is a pretext or the means for something but it is not the end, and they are works that have more to do with what is social.
Sometimes there an impotence feeling, as a citizen, when you aren’t able to do things. Then, art and the structure of art allow you to make, not only more objects to be sold in a fair to a collector, bit also to do something for the causes you believe in.
I’ve tried to get the media and the art world, yourselves involved with each other in other processes.
I was asked to create a piece for the MUCA and the MUAC that had to do with trash, and so I created this one which is a sort of campaign for a neighborhood to teach people to sort the trash for recycling.
So this kiosk is a prototype that was made for other things in the city to be made. We believe that in each neighborhood there should be one of these where you can receive information, residues are received and it becomes an educational project.
We made this library made out only of books that were donated, they are only old books, so kids come here to see and consult them. There are books about the oceans, some are about permaculture, on how to grow your own garden at home, or about the mysterious world of the microscope and we are still gathering more books.
This is the are where the residues are received. Back there we find the storage area. They are divided between pet, paper, tetra-pack wrappings and glass and metal. Some plastics are received.
We now have a deal with the garbage truck as they stop and then take away the already sorted trash. We give it to them for free, because people also donates it to us, and so we don’t get any profit from it… they take it away already separated and they sell it to the recycling companies. It is then something very easy to do, something that should be present in every neighborhood area, especially for having a concentrated place where the trash is being moved.
This project was born from another project that I started almost ten years ago in a trade school for homeless youngsters, children and older people living in the streets. It was a trade teaching school that was done inside of a square called Zarco that is located in the boundaries of the City Center where a group of 50 to 70 people were spending their nights there. This school lasted 7 years, and we took care of 210 people, and the most impressive thing was that through art, we were able to modify very difficult-to-change behaviors, such a drug use or stealing or low self-esteem, and especially to motivate them to keep going and make some sort of change in their lives. It was really cool then, to see the role of art as it also modifies the reality of a determined context such as the one of people living in the streets.
What I want to continue is to try and make models that can be replicated afterwards, and that it is impossible to do this as a citizen or as an artist but it stays there maybe as a predecessor that proves that we can indeed change reality.