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Lisa Blackmore | New Book: Liquid Ecologies in Latin American and Caribbean Art
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New Book: Liquid Ecologies in Latin American and Caribbean Art

We’re excited to announce that this new collaborative volume will be out at the start of July. This book is part of an ongoing project of thinking with and experiencing bodies of water through aesthetic production, which began with a panel we convened at the Latin American Studies Association annual conference in Lima, Peru, in 2017. Following a workshop in Barcelona 2018, we began work on expanding these international conversations with colleagues into an edited book.

Liquid Ecologies in Latin American and Caribbean Art

Routledge, forthcoming July 2020

With contributions from Lisa Blackmore, Liliana Gomez, Adriana Johnson, Rory O’Bryen, Gina McDaniel Tarver, Giuliana Borea & Rember Yahuarcani, Esther Moñivas, Irene Depetris Chauvin, Elizabeth DeLoughrey & Tatiana Flores, Paul Merchant, Sophie Halart.

Liquid Ecologies in Latin American and Caribbean Art is a new interdisciplinary volume that brings into dialogue research on how different fluids and bodies of water are mobilised as liquid ecologies in the arts. Examining the visual arts, including multimedia installations, performance, photography, and film, the chapters place diverse fluids and systems of flow in art historical, ecocritical, and cultural analytical contexts.

The dynamic movements of liquid run through this book in configurations and situations that reframe liquids and fluidity never as pure, abstract flow, but as contingent instances of contamination, overflow, counterflow, stasis, vortex, and reflux.

The contributions address a wide range of phenomena, probing the historical and political, cultural and environmental impacts of colonisation, urbanisation, and industrialisation in Latin America and the Caribbean through analyses of multimedia installations, performance, photography, film, poetry and testimony.

The chapters explore creative practice by a wide range of artists, poets and filmmakers, including María Magdalena Campos-Pons, Clemencia Echeverri, Alicia Barney, Cecilia Vicuña, Carolina Caycedo, Enrique Ramírez, Tony Capellán, Tomás Maldonado, among others.  

Tracing critical genealogies of liquids and fluidity, the book analyses aesthetic interventions that mobilise and recreate different fluids and flows to restage their absence, scarcity, vital materiality, and to rethink the relationships between periphery and metropolis, and their related forms of knowledge and knowledge practices. 

The book traces cultural histories and analyses of hydrological phenomena and hydraulic projects centred on the engineering of bodies of water and consider shifts in their semantic, sensorial, and social orders amid contexts of political and environmental violence and conflict. 

The book will be of interest to scholars of art history, environmental humanities, ecological humanities, blue humanities, ecocriticism, Latin American studies, and island studies.

Table of Contents

1 Beyond the Blue: Notes on the Liquid Turn

Lisa Blackmore and Liliana Gómez

Part I Liquid Epistemologies

2 Turbulent River Times: Art and Hydropower in Latin America’s Extractive Zones

Lisa Blackmore

3 Acts of Remaining: Liquid Ecologies and Memory Work in Contemporary Art Interventions

Liliana Gómez

4 An Expanse of Water: How to Know Water Through Film

Adriana Michéle Campos Johnson

Part II (De)Colonised Flows

5 Untangling the Mangrove: Slow Violence and the Environmentalism of the Poor in the Colombian Caribbean

Rory O’Bryen

6 “The Roar of the River Grows Ever Louder”: Polluted Waters in Colombian Eco-Art, From Alicia Barney to Clemencia Echeverri

Gina Mcdaniel Tarver

7 Amazonian Waterway, Amazonian Water Worlds: Rivers in Government Projects and Indigenous Art

Giuliana Borea and Rember Yahuarcani

Part III Fluid Memories

8 Water, Women and Action Art in Latin America: Materializing Ecofeminist Epistemologies

Esther Moñivas

9 Memories in the Present: Affect and Spectrality in Contemporary Aquatic Imaginaries

Irene Depetris Chauvin

Part IV Bodies of Water

10 Submerged Bodies: The Tidalectics of Representability and the Sea in Caribbean Art

Elizabeth Deloughrey and Tatiana Flores

11 Cecilia Vicuña’s Liquid Indigeneity

Paul Merchant

12 “A Water of a Hundred Eyes”: Reconfiguring Liquidity

Sophie Halart


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