archival and historical art

Drawings based on history-archives- newspaper

It is said that to know who we are or what it   is been doing today, it is necessary to look back on history.  And the best way to keep the past and history in our mind is through documents and archives and indeed they are   in every country.

Gaston Bachelard in his book “The poetics of the space” states: “At times  we think we know ourselves  in time,  when all we know    is a sequence of fixations  in the spaces  of the being`s stability – a being who does not want  to melt away ,and who, even  in the past, when we sets out  in search of things past , wants time to “suspend” its flight. In its countless alveoli space contains compressed time. That is what space is for “.(Poetics of space”, Gaston Bachelard, pg 8)

Our memories are kind of fixations of specific moments; long term memories and short term memories co-exist in our brain but it is the short memories that are   released. It happens to many of as that   just by looking an object, a place, a painting, a drawing or photograph we  brings back some memories easily, in other cases the smell and sound work in the same way too helps too

The work of Ericson and Ziegler called In The Smell and Taste Things Remain (1992), installation- “literally Conjure up the smell of our nation’s history. Upon walking into the exhibition space the viewer was greeted with the aroma of musty books and long-forgotten records—the antiquated scent of dust and age that we associate with history… how can we capture the taste of history” (History as art, art as history. Contemporary art and social studies education) pg. 53

It is interesting how artists, supported in the history, develop their works,taking past moments back to the present   by using archives that belong to a specific moment in the history regarding a country or the world.  That is the case of Fernando Bryce. Bryce is a Peruvian artist who Works with elements about the history.

This artist works on different subjects, whether social or political issues but he bases his work in a thoroughgoing  analysis. By using the technique of drawing he reproduces, copies of photos or archives that belong to the history, pieces of news taken from magazines or newspapers, leaflets and propaganda print. As we can see in his work: “Work in Progress” Bryce&per_page=12&&&page=2

,and in  kolonial Post

Regarding the series of drawings made to this exhibitions Fernando Bryce said: “ this work is about the European  imperialism and colonialism from the beginning  of  the twenty century . to this last exhibition I have work  based magazines and publications basically from Germany but also Britain and  French’s. There are images   of documents  regarding the  variety of ant colonial  and anti-imperialism resistance  happened at the beginning of  the twenty  century… as usual it is about to take a current view over the past  history to what there  are genealogical  lines  that link  us in a patron of power that  according to  my point  essentially it is the same nowadays… Fernando Bryce ,Peruvian newspaper “ EL COMERCIO” interview  by  Carlo Trivelli


Dipti Desai, Jessica Hamlin, and Rachel Mattson,2009, History as Art, Art as History Contemporary Art and Social Studies Education, new York.

Gaston Bachelard,1958, Poetics of space”,  translation 1964.Orion Press.

Fernando Bryce interviewe in: Arte Nuevo


About azulrojo

peru/lima- painter prectitioner-art teacher
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