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Forjando Patria

“Forging a Nation”

Forjando Patria (Forging a Nation) is a philosophy of the Mexican anthropologist Manuel Gamio written during the first decade of the Mexican Revolution (1910-1930), and published in 1916. Gamio, made a series of theories regarding the formation of a post-revolutionary Mexico that seem to have remained stagnant in time, from where a chaotic Mexico seems to have sprouted. Still, Gamio's ideas and poetic thoughts must be constantly revisited and analyzed to understand the dynamism and contemporary perception of Mexico in the 20th and 21st century. Jointly, in 2010 the anthropologist Fernando Armstrong-Fumero published a translation of Gamio's text, where a series of semantics and rhetoric that make up the ideas and expressions used by Gamio in his original text can be elucidated. The Armstrong-Fumero translation will serve as the English translation while creating a correspondence between the original ideas and the interpretation from the translation.

With the original text, the translation, and using the title of Gamio, the experimental video Forjando Patria (Forging a Nation) is a critical study of concepts such as what is Mexican, Mexicana, and/or race in the 2023 Mexico. In addition, it will allow us to consider the intersectionality of a population in constant re/construction, and the utopias and imaginaries that arise when the social, the political, the historical, and the cultural, among other agents, are spilled over identity. Mexico is not the only case of a constant struggle between nation and identity, and this visual exercise aims to connect with other geographies and visions about the expectations and projections that societies forge of themselves, and how political and global forces polarize and disturb natural action and self-recognition with the place of origin, history, and collective memory.

Carlos Colín (Mexico, 1980) is a Mexican Vancouver based visual artist and pedagogue. Carlos’ research and artistic practice explores the core cultural, theoretical, socio-political, tecno-feudal, religious, and artistic manifestations through baroque’s system as a colonial legacy in contemporary Mexico, Latin America, and by extension their migration communities.

Carlos is currently a PhD candidate in UBC. He studied his undergraduate program in Visual Communication and Design (2004), and a Master of Fine Arts (2011) at the National School of Fine Art UNAM, in Mexico City. He has a second Master of Fine Arts at the University of British Columbia in UBC (2013). His work has been exhibited in venues like the biennial BIENALSUR 2021 in Argentina; Rufino Tamayo Museum in Mexico City; AWA Cultura in Caracas, Venezuela; The Reach Gallery Museum, Art Gallery of Greater Victoria, and Grunt Gallery in BC; Sur Gallery in Toronto; and Galería de la Raza in USA to name a few.