un diario ocasional

This project was developed in collaboration with CRAC Valparaíso during an
artist-in-residence work period in Valparaíso, Chile, 2013.

El Deformes is a newspaper that researches the building process of the National Congress building at the end of the 1980s in Valparaíso, Chile. This significant project was initiated by US-backed dictator Augusto Pinochet during the last years of his regime - which moved the Congress from the capital Santiago to the harbour city Valparaíso. The building, however, was only taken into use after the fall of Pinochet by the new democratically elected government in March 1990.

The project was inspired by the film ...A Valparaíso (1963) by Joris Ivens- a socially engaged important Dutch Filmmaker, who filmed the social and political conditions of the city 50 years before. He did this on invitation of Salvador Allende (not yet president at the time) - ten years before the coup on his socialist government took place on 11 September 1973.

The format of the newspaper was chosen to 'open up' the medium and because it's cheap to produce and easy to disperse. The printed press was, and still is, very biased in the Chilean context - were there is a lack of independent journalism and journalists are structurally under paid. We tried to open up the medium by looking into the archive of El Mecurio (a pro-Pinochet) newspaper at Biblioteca Severin. In El Deformes we reprinted the clips from 1988-90 related to the building of the National Congress to show the way the process was reported upon.

We juxtaposed these clips with five pages of opinions by Valparaíso citizens. We collected these by doing surveys at the weekly market right next to the Congress building - asking the passer-byes their opinions about the current condition of the printed media; the history of the location; and on a contemporary controversy construction project in Valparaíso: Mall Barón. This with the aim to gather opinions of the general public which were and perhaps still are obscured. Aside to that we interviewed the shop owner Mario Llancaqueo Vera, of Librería Crisis (bookshop Crisis) - exactly opposite to the Congress building - who deliberately chose that location to open his bookstore.

During the process we organised two public film screenings at ATEVA (Asociación Teatral de Valparaíso) a theater company who's actors were part of Joris Ivens' film in collaboration with ATEVA and Insomnia (Alternativa de cine, Valparaíso).

The newspaper was disseminated for free at several occasions: at demonstrations, at the market & at bookshop Crisis. Amount of copies printed: 2000. Printed at El Mercurio presses.

This residency was funded by the Mondriaan Foundation, The Netherlands. April, May, June 2013.