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Home arrow Philosophy arrow Playful Memories: The Autofictional Turn in Post-Dictatorship Argentina


  • 1. The exhibition also included photographs from Arqueologta de la ausencia (1999-2001), and a series of documentary videos made by other children of disappeared parents about the process of recovering the remains of the victims.
  • 2. Quieto, “Interview with the author,” my emphasis.
  • 3. Amado, “Ordenes de la memoria y desordenes de la ficcion,” 54.
  • 4. Longoni, “Apenas, nada menos,” 3.
  • 5. Quieto, “Interview with the author.”
  • 6. For an analysis of the pictures kept by Basterra, see Garcia and Longoni, “Imagenes invisibles: acerca de las fotos de los desaparecidos.”
  • 7. Sontag, On Photography, 21.
  • 8. Edwards, “Photographs as Objects of Memory,” 232.
  • 9. Sontag, Remembering the Pain of the Others, 19.
  • 10. Virginia Giannoni gathered together many of the commemorative notices published in Pagina/12 for an exhibition in the Centro Cultural San Martin in 2003.
  • 11. Beceyro, Ensayo sobre fotografia, 113.
  • 12. Wajcman, L’Objet du Sieele, 19.
  • 13. Cited in Brink, “Iconos seculares,” 11.
  • 14. Da Silva Catela, “Lo invisible revelado,” 341.
  • 15. Longoni, “Fotos y siluetas,” 44.
  • 16. Prividera, Restos, 67.
  • 17. Richard, “Imagen-recuerdo y borraduras,” 167.
  • 18. Dillon, “Prologue,” 3. In 1999, before conceiving the idea for Arqueologta de la auseneia, Quieto tried different strategies to create an image that contained both father and daughter. One example of this attempt is a collage entitled Ojos (1999) that shows two faces with the parts belonging to each jumbled up. Ludmila da Silva Catela, Mariana Giordano and Elizabeth Jelin suggest that the relationship between photography (which fixes the past) and memory (which works in the present) is symbolized in the metaphor of retoear el retrato (retouching the portrait) (Introduction, 11). It is the questions we pose to the photographs in the present, they say, that produce an act of memory where before there was only a frozen image in time. In Ojos, Lucila Quieto makes literal use of the metaphor of “retouching the portrait” to create bridges between times and generations. Moreover, the transposition of the eyes and mouths in this college produces a comical, playful effect. The juxtaposition of body parts and faces also produces a temporal fold that allows the encounter between father and daughter to take place, revealing at the same time, in that comical effect, the impossibility of the reunion.
  • 19. Amado, “Ordenes de la memoria y desordenes de la ficcion,” 54.
  • 20. An episode of the BBC series Black Mirror, written by Charlie Brooker, imagines a disturbing near future in which people will be able to record everything they see as if their eyes were a camera, keeping their memories as if they were computer files and watching them as many times as they want.
  • 21. Landsberg, Prosthetic Memory, 18.
  • 22. Quieto, “Interview with the author.”
  • 23. Ibid.
  • 24. Copeland, “Merce Cunningham and the Aesthetic of Collage,” 11.
  • 25. Fortuny, Memorias fotograficas, 50.
  • 26. Perez, “Los abrazos rotos.”
  • 27. For a comprehensive analysis of Quieto’s collages, see Blejmar, “La Argentina enpedazos: Los collages fotograficos de Lucila Quieto.”
  • 28. Accorsi, “Un poco de historia,” 13.
  • 29. Quieto, “Interview with the author.”
  • 30. Bruzzone, “Visiones para un lugar invisible.”
  • 31. Ibid.
  • 32. Ibid.
  • 33. In both his fictions and his performances in Lola Arias’ Mis documentos (2013), Bruzzone also plays with the dramatic history of this place. He imagines the peaceful occupation of Campo de Mayo by painterly characters. There is, for example, the story of a runner who uses it as a training field while he reflects on the past and the future, avoiding the obstacles imposed by the place. The story then takes off and becomes truly delirious, as often happens in Bruzzone’s literature: the runner stops running to visit whorehouses in the surroundings where he believes he will find his disappeared mother after a sergeant confessed to him that he fell in love with her and kept her captive there. In another fiction, Mr Planta uses the land to grow his plants and El Hombre Huesos, another imaginary inhabitant of the place, builds dinosaurs and dreams of creating an ecological reserve to save the fields from the rubbish.
  • 34. Bruzzone, “Como limpiar de basura la memoria.”
  • 35. Laub, “Testimony and Historical Truth,” 83.
  • 36. Batchen, “Photography’s Object,” 2.
  • 37. For this particular aspect of the photographs of the disappeared, see also Ines Ulanovsky’s Fotos tuyas (2006).
  • 38. Edwards and Hart, Photographs Objects Histories: On the Materiality of Images, 5.
  • 39. There are three classes of spirit photography. First, portraits of living discar- nate beings or spirits; second, pictures of effigies or lay figures, often incomplete and not necessarily human-like; and, third, reproductions of physical pictures or objects.
  • 40. Coates, Photographing the Invisible, 2.
  • 41. Natale, Supernatural Entertainments, 135.
  • 42. Rojinsky, “Mourning the Image.”
  • 43. Batchen, Forget Me Not, 94.
  • 44. Batchen, Forget Me Not, 96.
  • 45. Batchen, Forget Me Not, 91.
  • 46. Bouquet, “The Family Photographic Condition,” 8.
  • 47. I have analyzed these works elsewhere. See Blejmar, “Anacronismos” and “Un viaje extraordinario.”
  • 48. Fortuny, Memorias fotograficas, 91.
  • 49. Longoni, “Apenas, nada menos,” 6.
  • 50. I have analyzed these images in more detail elsewhere. See Blejmar, “Itinerarios” and Blejmar and Fortuny, “Miradas de otros.”
  • 51. Bell, The Art of Post-Dictatorship, 131.
  • 52. Garcia, Politicas de la memoria y de la imagen, 95.
  • 53. Ricreur, Memory, History, Forgetting, 12.
  • 54. Sontag, Regarding the Pain of Others, 22.
  • 55. Hirsch, Family Frames, xiii.
  • 56. Bouquet, “The Family Photographic Condition,” 16.
  • 57. Miller, “Putting Ourselves in the Picture: Memoirs and Mourning,” 53.
  • 58. Tandeciarz, “Mnemonic Hauntings,” 135.
  • 59. I have analyzed some of these works in Blejmar, “La imagen re(s)puesta.”
  • 60. Colectivo de hijos blog.
  • 61. Quieto, “Interview with the author.”
  • 62. Huyssen, En busca del futuro perdido, 28.
  • 63. Esses, “Los Huachos.”
  • 64. Schwartz, “Teach it to the children,” 37.
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