Óscar Muñoz

9 May 2004

Single-channel video projection, no sound. 28’

Remembering is a political exercise. In a context like Colombia where civil society lives in the midst of a crossfire, product of years of civil war, the images of deaths and disappearances that flooded the media have been banalised. Throughout his work, Muñoz has reflected on the condition of the image, its social uses and the affective projections associated with it. When problematising the limits and the ethics of representation, the immutability of the images is threatened; the artist cross-examines remembrance’s ethicality, confronting us with a memory that vanishes and calls for an active agency in order to prevail. Given the lack of an image that could replace memory, by archiving it and converting its history into statistics, the images in Muñoz’s work lay bare the limit of representation that persists in memory. Re/trato is a meditation on the condition of the image, on self-representation and on the reflective effort of the thinking being in midst of a flow of events. The action documented in this video is bracketed between representation and emptiness, in a circular exercise between presence and absence, memory and amnesia.