Start and end of the revolution, 2017.

Work created specifically for the group show Revolution that took place at the self-managed space ABM from November 24 to December 5, 2017.

Text of the exhibition.

«For some time now the concept of revolution, after two centuries in which it had occupied a central place in the discourse and in the political and social experience, seemed worn out, typical of a past time and with no possibility of a future path. Its apparent exhaustion, in the era of diffuse cynicism, was associated with the arrogant proclamation of the definitive triumph of the neoliberal capitalist model which, through one of its most prominent ideologues: Francis Fukuyama, decreed the end of history. In short, the definitive advent of the reign of freedom, that is, the self-realization of history in neo-Hegelian terms. Social unrest, however, did not seem to confirm these theses. Throughout a world increasingly subjected, thanks to technological expansion, to the empire of transnational capital, in a concrete version of globalization, the catastrophic consequences of a deregulated and privatizing system were being felt.

In this context, various responses emerged that resisted this celebrated phenomenon, from the appearance on the political scene of Latin American populism, in the best sense of the term, to the anti-globalization social movements and a constellation of struggles, some already historical, such as that of feminism confronting the capitalist model of heteropatriarchal oppression, to which, more recently, the LGTBI+ movement or those of environmental or migrant activism would be added. Despite these responses, the prevailing social atmosphere, at least in the Western context, seemed to be dominated by a hopelessness where the possibilities of transformation had vanished into the past. Thus, the only changes that could be conceived were those offered by the dominant system itself in terms of capital expansion and the development of technoscience. Among those who felt this unique option as a form of oppression, not a few perceived as the only way out of this situation, the substitution of the revolutionary yearning for the desire of the advent of the definitive catastrophe. That is, revolution became apocalypse.

In any case, the colonization of the global imaginary by the dominant system as a single ideology has resulted in the impossibility of imagining another world and, in the face of social discontent with this proposal, recourse to the idea of the end of days as an escape route from these vital conditions. It is in this sense that Fredric Jameson expressed himself in the mid-nineties of the last century: "It seems that today it is easier for us to imagine the total deterioration of the earth and of nature than the collapse of capitalism; perhaps this is due to some weakness of our imagination."

As stated at the beginning, with the turn of the millennium it seemed that everything had been done. The demoliberal model had been consolidated and the alternative paths had been occluded by virtue of a breakdown of the transformation narratives of modernity. However, a few years earlier, a rebellion had been brewing that would paradoxically have the ruling class as its revolutionary subject. The rebellion of the elites, as Christopher Lasch called it, defines a phenomenon in which the privileged classes of the economic and political environment decide to free themselves from the ties that bind them to the rest of society and unilaterally terminate the social contract. They thus establish an isolated world presided over by a drive for total accumulation, material and of power, and the lack of genuine empathy with the rest of society, not being willing to a distribution, even minimal, of wealth unless it means an increase in their power over these populations. This implies, according to Lasch, a fragmentation of states and a betrayal of democracy.

The high point of this revolution from above, and certainly more visible to the population in general, will be the financial crisis that broke out in 2007 and that under this form concealed a paradigm shift, the origins of which lay decades ago, and which has led to a scenario of social devastation. In this situation, the idea of revolution has been revitalized in the social imaginary, the most visible expressions of which, at least in the media, have been, among others, phenomena such as the Arab Spring, the 15M in Spain or Occupy Wall Street in New York. Given this apparent social recovery of the political and the current situation of the contexts in which they took place - the failure of the Arab way and the election of Mariano Rajoy and Donald Trump as presidents - it is worth asking about the "real" effectiveness of these movements.

The purpose of this proposal is to analyze how artistic production has dealt with the different manifestations of the revolution, whether they are considered more or less genuine, and what positions can be adopted from this territory at a time of the emergence of the revolutionary notion.»