Mercedes Angola *1962, Bogotá, Colombia. Lives and works in Bogotá, Colombia
The Angola: Objects and Connections Project is focused on the configuration of an archive of images (photos, videos, audios and texts) related to the cultural and documentary history of Angola as a region whose name is my last name. By pursuing these roots, I uncover how the personal leads to larger historical and cultural connections that link contemporary Colombia to its African origins. I assume the role of the urban subject—born and educated in Bogota—and situated in my country as a descendant of Colombia’s African past. With this study, I want to engage critically with the narratives and visual representations that have often been imposed upon the black peoples of Colombia as well as the identities they have created in narrative and visual representations for themselves. Unlike many pieces viewed from the outside in a spectatorial relationship, my installation requires the audience to enter one at a time and to be inside the experience—to cross into another world.