UA-168802058-1
Erola Arcalís     Shipwreck studies   On myth and representation       Daguerréotype       La mesa de los ausentes     Rehearsing the real     Lethe    about







La mesa de los ausentes




The Table of the Absent‭  re-stages a dinner table that appeared in the central pavilion of the 1976 Venice Biennial, where Spanish artists (supporters of a democratic republic) were invited to take part. Under the name Spain: Artistic Vanguard and Social Reality  (1936 -1976), the curators proposed a transformation of the official historical narrative constructed over 40 years of Regime. As a symbolic gesture, they staged an empty dinner scenario, with the names of absent artists, musicians, writers and academics on placeholders of each seat.

This was a significant moment in time for Spain. Gen. Francisco Franco had died and the country was slowly transitioning towards a new democracy. Now, forty-two years after the signing of the Spanish Constitution, questions of national identity, in a country composed of an amalgamation of languages and strong regional cultures, remain widely unresolved whilst surrounded by tensions of rising nationalist sentiments. In this context, this research’s inquiry is how through an artistic practice it’s possible to re-assess the memory of history, contribute to healing and understanding nationalist divisions.














Erola Arcalís     Shipwreck studies   On myth and representation       Daguerréotype       La mesa de los ausentes     Rehearsing the real     Lethe    about