Untitled (Blood Sign #2/Body Tracks)

Ana Mendieta

Havana, Cuba, 1948 - New York, USA, 1985
  • Date: 
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  • Media description: 
    8 mm film transferred to video
  • Duration: 
    1 min. 20 sec.
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  • Category: 
    Performance, Film
  • Entry date: 
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Ana Mendieta, a Cuban-born artist living in exile in the USA from the age of 12, spent her whole artistic career on the border between the North American and Latin cultures. And in that context, her work shares a number of approaches with other feminist art practices of the time; in Mendieta’s case, her twofold otherness (woman and Latin American) in a patriarchal Anglo-Saxon culture placed her within a more complex conceptual dimension; that of post-colonial feminism. In this film Mendieta makes track-like marks, trails of blood that drag from her forearms, drawing a downward movement like bloodshed which, when it ends, leaves the viewer staring at the remains of the action, transformed into performative text. The work involving the body takes on a sacrificial quality while at the same time providing a radical way of presenting the subjectivity with which lifeblood itself becomes a painting pigment. Untitled (Blood Sign #2/Body Tracks) is closely linked to other actions using blood done in the early 1970s, such as those she recorded in the privacy of her own home as a reflection on other private kinds of violence.

Lola Hinojosa