Locutorio Colón

kawamura-ganjavian & Tadanori Yamaguchi

Until 6 February 2006

Installation and data viewing

When the authors received this commission from the public art programme Madrid Abierto, their first question was: What is public art, actually? They believe it is the practice that “generates” public interactive space regardless of where it happens. Colón was the first communicator between Europe and the Americas. Now, more than five centuries after that first contact, they suggest using this agora to highlight the contemporary state of relationships. The entangled social melting pot of Madrid contains new emerging communities, consisting chiefly of Latin-American immigrants. In the current communication society, call centres perform a catalytic function for the recently arrived communities. They are the physical vortices of an indefinite but dense mesh of local and global relationships. The proposal consisted of a free call centre to Latin America located in Plaza de Colón (Madrid) during one month. This project explores the collateral aspects: where the users came from, how news of its existence spread, how its use was organised, parallel activities that sprung up around it… Fundación Telefónica published a summary book.

Acknowledgements: Madrid Abierto, Marta de la Torriente, Fundación Telefónica

Collaborators: Clara Mata, Manuel Jiménez, Ricardo Almendros, Manuel Torres