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DESAPARECIDOS, DOVE SONO? - WHERE ARE THE DISAPPEARED?

 

 
 

 

The Argentine Television
Colour, 50 minutes, 1982
Images for a radio football commentary
Colour, 11 minutes, 1982

An exhibition designed by Marco Bechis and created by the Ripartizione Cultura e Spettacolo del Comune di Milano (Arts and Culture Department, Milan City Council) and Amnesty International. The video installation, designed like a piece of advertising, is the climax of a campaign designed to make widely known the word “desaparecidos” in its non-etymological meaning. The structure of the first videotape is taken from the format of Argentine TV programmes, which show commercials every four to six minutes.

 

   
 

Information about the desaparecidos scrolls over the Argentine flag: date of disappearance, name, age. The second videotape is a synthesis and features, among other things, a reconstruction of the secret detention camp "Club Atletico" in Buenos Aires, and of cell no. 16, where Marco Bechis had been locked up for a brief period of time. The soundtrack of both tapes is the radio commentary of the Argentine goals scored during the semi-finals and finals of the 1978 World Cup.

"In 1982, with the video installation "DESAPARECIDOS, DOVE SONO?" in Milan, via Morigi 8, I tried to communicate through the senses what a concentration camp really was. The word "desaparecidos" had also begun to acquire a sombre meaning in Italian. The idea for the exhibition arose from an Amnesty International document, which for the first time described the concentration camps from the inside. Reading that document I understood that I had been held prisoner in one of the underground camps described in that very document" (Marco Bechis).

   
   

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