Mapas elementares nº 3 (Elementary Maps No. 3)

Anna Bella Geiger

Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, 1933
  • Series: 
    Mapas elementares (Elementary Maps)
  • Date: 
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  • Media description: 
    Video (Betacam SP and DVD)
  • Duration: 
    3 min. 12 sec.
  • Colour: 
    Black and white
  • Sound: 
  • Category: 
  • Entry date: 
  • Register number: 

Mapas elementares nº 3 (Elementary Maps No. 3) is a visual poem in which Anna Bella Geiger alludes to the stereotypes and myths attributed to cultures from Latin America through the relationship between the anthropomorphic character of the South Cone’s topography and semantic games, between the formal and the metaphorical, which she establishes with words. So, the Latin American territory turns into an amulet representing mysticism, a mulata, representing the racial mix, and a crutch, representing neglect and economic dependence (in Spanish, amuleto, mulata, muleta). Here, the rhythm and lyric of the bolero Virgen Negra set the order of the sequence.
In Geiger’s work, series are fundamental, because they allow her to develop mutations, variations and metamorphoses on a central theme. The artist, one of the pioneers of video-art thanks to the time she has spent in New York since 1970, works on ideas such as territory, passage and situation in a variety of media including drawing, photography, painting and video. As well as the Mapas elementares series shown here, mention should be made of the work Passagens (Passages), which deals with the temporary occupation of public spaces undergoing processes of urban transformation.

Cristina Cámara Bello