Juan Acha. Revolutionary Awakening is the first exhibition ever made with the special collections of the archive of Juan Acha (1916-1995). The starting point of this show is an article written by Acha in 1970, in which he describes the Latin American radical artistic experiments of the late 60s as a cultural guerrilla. “Artists –asserts Acha with emphasis– are taking active part in our revolutionary awakening; they talk about and make sense of the Cultural Revolution”.

Ilustración de Luis Felipe Noé para la portada de El arte de América Latina es la revolución (1973) de Miguel Rojas Mix. Fotografía cortesía de Luis Felipe Noé.

Ilustración de Luis Felipe Noé para la portada de El arte de América Latina es la revolución (1973) de Miguel Rojas Mix. Fotografía cortesía de Luis Felipe Noé.

Before the article that serves as the curatorial motif of this exhibition appeared published in Italy, Juan Acha was incarcerated by the dictatorial regime of Velasco Alvarado, self-proclaimed a revolutionary government. This event motivated his decision of leaving Lima in order to establish a permanent base in Mexico City. It was a transitional period for Acha. Our goal in moving his personal papers from the archive to the museum evokes these displacements, proposing a dialogue between Lima, Mexico, and Latin America.

Juan Acha. Revolutionary Awakening explores his different roles as an art critic, curator, theoretician, and educator, with an emphasis on his involvement with the cultural arena from which derived the Mexican grupos and his proactive organization of emblematic events such as the symposium of the Primera Bienal Latinoamericana de Sao Paulo (1978) or the Primer Coloquio Latinoamericano de Arte No-Objetual y Arte Urbano de Medellín (1981).

Besides the personal archive of Juan Acha –donated to UNAM by Argentinean artist Mahia Biblos in 2008– Juan Acha. Revolutionary Awakening has been complemented with materials collected from the Centro de Documentación Arkheia and from others international collections. All these materials are characterized by their potential double existence as works of art or documentation, such as video recordings of happenings, mail art, or the material inscription of conceptual practices, all of them variation of what Juan Acha defined as Non-Objectual Art.

With Juan Acha. Revolutionary Awakening, MUAC closes a series of exhibitions and activities held in various countries, devoted to celebrate the anniversary of Juan Acha.

MUSEO UNIVERSITARIO ARTE CONTEMPORÁNEO
muac.unam.mx
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