Baño en el cañito

Wilson Díaz

8 May 2000

Single-channel video, colour, sound. 2’ 21’’

Baño en el cañito documents an intimate, everyday scene of a group of teenagers washing in a stream, getting dressed and preening themselves. Ignoring, yet at once ever-conscious of the presence of the camera, they keep an eye on it and act for it. This moment of relaxation and privacy was recorded in the now dissolved “demilitarised zone” in Colombia. This area measuring 42,000 square kilometres in the south of the country was handed over to FARC (Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia) in 1999 by the then president Andrés Pastrana, with a view to a possible peace negotiation. Díaz’s recording was made during a meeting between observers organised by the government in this zone. Filmed in the middle of a highly mediatised conflict in an area which had become the symbolic centre of a war which continues devastating the South-American country, Díaz’s video unfolds a narrative cutting against the grain of the visuality diffused by a media bombardment tending to dehumanise the conflict in favour of the hegemonic power.