LEER CON LAS MANOS
To read with the hands
A journey through the photographic work Leer con las manos, a series that explores the relationship between gaze and reading. Made for the Festival of Reading, MALBA, premiered on May 15, 2021.
To read with the hands
A journey through the photographic work Leer con las manos, a series that explores the relationship between gaze and reading. Made for the Festival of Reading, MALBA, premiered on May 15, 2021.
Aída Carballo (1916-1985) was a fundamental Argentine artist. This video takes as a starting point a series of personal documents of the artist that show her activity in the local and international environment, her teaching work, some study notes, bureaucratic procedures. In the latter you can see the evolution of her signature, from childhood to adulthood and creative maturity, when her name began to be part of her work. In this work, the tracing of her manuscripts becomes a form of proximity and an attempt to repeat an alien gesture that is never achieved.
Duration: 10:40 minutes
Photographic documentation: Luci Laumann.
Camera, action and editing: Leticia Obeid.
Color correction: Sol Miraglia.
Sound post-production: Luis El Halli Obeid
Made for the exhibition: Transformation. The overflow graph. Engraving Museum, National House of the Bicentennial, February-July 2021. Curators: Silvia Dolinko y Cristina Blanco
Museo del grabado
Why do archives haunt me?
Sound installation, 19:43 minutes, November 2020
Curated for the exhibition The Collection listens, Palais de Glace, Buenos Aires.
This piece researches the works on the collection of a traditional prize in Argentina, the National Salon, which has existed since 1911. The audio was installed in the deposit of sculptural works that have remained in the possession of Palais de Glace since the 1930s. Going through the catalogs of the awards, the audio makes a journey that threads some points in relation to the problem of selecting, filing, remembering and also what is left out of that selection that builds up a collection.
Organized by: Whitechapel Gallery, London – Fundación Proa, Buenos Aires
May – September
Artists’ Film International is a collaborative project featuring film, video and animation from around the world.
Life can feel like the accumulation of words in a book as we record thoughts and experiences. What if we could reverse, pause or accelerate these in the same way that a book’s pages can be flipped back and forth? Janus was a two-faced god in Roman mythology: one face looking to the past and the other to the future. Janus was the god of doorways, beginnings and endings. In this series, the books’ pages behave like Janus, going from past to future of a text or vice versa. Jano is the attempt to revise the minimum portion of time that can be frozen in movement, through image.
Ergin Çavuşoğlu – Istanbul Modern, Istanbul (Turquía)
Amina Dryabee – Centre for Contemporary Arts Afghanistan (CCAA), Kabul (Afganistán)
Miguel Fernández de Castro – Ballroom Marfa, Marfa, Texas (EE.UU.)
Bojan Fajfrić – Kulturni centar Beograda (Centro Cultural de Belgrado), (Belgrado)
Yu Guo – KWM artcentre, Beijing (China)
Mohamed A. Gawad – Mohammad and Mahera Abu Ghazaleh Foundation, Amman (Jordania)
Evgeny Granilshchikov – Moscow Museum of Modern Art, Moscow (Rusia)
Daisuke Kosugi – Tromsø Kunstforening, Tromsø (Noruega)
Vika Kirchenbauer – Neuer Berliner Kunstverein kunst forum (n.b.k.), Berlin (Alemania)
Ailbhe ni Bhriain – Crawford Art Gallery, Cork (Irlanda)
Leticia Obeid – Fundacion PROA, Buenos Aires (Argentina)
Dominka Olszowy – Museum of Modern Art, Warsaw (Polonia)
Francesco Pedraglio – Galleria D’Arte Moderna e Contemporanea, Bergamo (Italia)
Yao Qingmei – Para/Site Art Space (Hong Kong)
To read with the hands
This series explores the relationship between gazing and reading, between a moving image and a still image. Each piece collects 180 photos taken in bursts for later animation and we can see the arrangement of these images in their progression towards movement, even when they are still. One next to the other, they make a path in which it is possible to see the exact moment of the change in the shot, caused by the movement of the filmed object – a book, a hand, a page that is turned to see the next.
The stabilized image at a point of change, the movement made object, the linear reading becoming circular, are the subjects of this work.
Digital photography | 50 x 80 cm.
The song of janus
There is an outdated conversation that occurs in the literature of different times, voices that speak and answer each other over time, like echoes, or like the responses we rehearse for a ghost.
On one hand, Louise May Alcott, the author of Little Women. On the other, Walter Benjamin, delving into the ruins of the nineteenth century, to understand the forms of the twentieth century. Over there Goethe’s Young Werther, here Marguerite Duras and her soliloquies on writing; the memory exercises of Georges Perec, and the pure present of Clarice Lispector.
We write when we read, we read when we look, and we also hear the voice of a text, mixed with our own voice. When touching two images or two texts, or an image and a word, sometimes sparks fly, creating a new thing. That line of friction, sometimes almost imperceptible or as thin as the edge of a sheet of paper, is Janus’ territory.
This series taken in the Pampean plain of the province of Córdoba is always in relation to the frame of a vehicle: the windows of the car or the bus are the mediators in the experience of a territory that is traditionally conceived only as the middle between a point and other. The pampa has always been treated, by art and literature, as an empty region, without beauty, monotonous and uniform. On the contrary, these photos, taken on different trips along the same stretch of Route 9, want to give an account of an amorous look on that landscape.
Analog photography, variable sizes.
This series takes up a previous procedure of copying handwritten texts. In this case, it is about images that circulate on the internet with reproductions of writings of various times and authors. The medium of the copy is the computer screen that behaves like a light bank and allows images to be traced on paper. As in the previous series, this one investigates the limit between the spontaneity of the gesture and its mechanization, the intimate nature of a text and its public circulation and the limits between the singular and the collective that are always at stake in the old practice of handwriting.
Ink and pencil on paper | Assorted sizes
Illustrations for the novel Florentina, by Eduardo Muslip, published in 2017 by Blatt&Rios, Buenos Aires.
Pencil and ink on paper | 21 x 29,7 cm ; 21 x 14,8 cm
Ink and pencil on paper | 21 x 29,7 cm; 29,7 x 21 cm
The letter of B.
This series of drawings copy some manuscripts of the German philosopher Walter Benjamin, the thinker who reflected, among other things, on the nature of mechanical copying and its relationship with art. Some of them are notes for The Arcades Project, his unfinished project, others are snippets of complex theories or a simple bill for the cost of a lunch, sleeping puns, trivial things of everyday life that became documents. In this attempt to copy the handwriting, a trait of individuality almost as impossible to imitate as a fingerprint, drawing becomes a form of proximity, crossing time and space.
Ink on paper | 29,7 x 21 cm
This series of drawings deals with a group of graphic lines linked to memory, to the automatic gesture, to the residual images of a type of illustration present in books such as the argentinean Robin Hood collection, where the images freely recreate the engraving style of century XIX. Comic, surrealism, kitsch, ornament and gesture intersect, intertwine, move away, to play with an increasingly distorted echo of the original forms. Diamante travels the mobile border between the figurative and the abstract, the geometric and the organic, writing and drawing; in short, it seeks the limits between what is spontaneous and what is learned within the gesture of drawing.
Ink and pencil on paper | Sizes 42 x 29,7 cm; 29,7 x 42 cm; 21 x 14, 8 cm
This series accompanied the research process around Walter Benjamin´s The Arcades Project, to carry out the video-essay B.
The street becomes the central theme in this series: movements, words, characters and fleeting images that remain like impressions on the retina when closing the eyes, like echoes of ideas that are activated when walking.
Ink on paper | 21 x 29.7 cm
Notes and traces
Gallery 1313, Toronto | 10 to 20 of October.
Curator: Laura Preger
1313 Queen St. West, Toronto
Presented by Colectivo Toronto and Club Cultural Matienzo
With the support of the Ontario Arts Council and the Metropolitan Fund for Culture, Arts and Sciences of the City of Buenos Aires
This series takes as a starting point translation between languages, to reflect on the relationship between form and content and to test whether it is possible to break down this dichotomy. Is translation a mechanical change of forms or does it construct another reality? The translation between the words here becomes a transformation of the image and the writing of the sound.
Ink on paper | 35 x 20 cm
Music is part of a process of works carried out as an emotional inventory, if such a paradox were possible. Recreating lists of songs and albums of popular music, copying their lyrics or using them as a starting point for drawings, this series takes a journey through musical and emotional memory, where it is very difficult to find the distinction between the individual and the collective. We remember the songs we love as milestones in our personal lives but at the same time we share that background with many others and the sound brings that memory to the surface.
Ink on paper | 29,7 x 21 cm | 50 drawings
SOLO SHOW | HACHE Gallery | June-August
Curator: Federico Baeza
Rock, scissors, paper
In 2017, Leticia Obeid made a video piece that accompanied the performance in the main auditorium of the Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía, Madrid, of the contemporary opera L ́officina de la resurrezione, by Fabián Panisello, with texts by Erri de Lucca. A reworking of this material filmed at the Bernardino Rivadavia National Museum of Natural Sciences, and exhibited for the first time here, is the starting point for a process of reencounter with painting.
SOLO SHOW | Museum of Contemporary Art of Buenos Aires (MACBA) | August – October
Curator: Teresa Riccardi
This exhibition was named after the main video of the exhibition, a piece that superimposes two layers of the same film, The Philadelphia story, by George Cukor (1940) in its original version in English and in its version dubbed into Spanish. A slight offset between the two generates a kind of ghost in the image, residue and point of intersection at the same time. In this sample, the video was installed in the space by sectorizing the areas of each language, so the film could be watched in English or Spanish according to the location in the room. A second video, Jano & Marcel, revisits Duchamp’s work, Étant Donnés (1946-1966). The other axis of the exhibition was the series of photos El canto de Jano, which establishes dialogues and connections between texts and authors, genres and times.
Section Dixit | ArteBA 2016 | La Rural, Argentina.
Known and unsuspected affinities in a journey through the artistic production of our time
Curators: Federico Beza, Lara Marmor, Sebastián Vidal Mackinson
Nicanor Aráoz, Gabriel Baggio, Javier Barilaro, Diego Bianchi, Jane Brodie, Eugenia Calvo, Laura Códega, Claudia Del Río, Valentín Demarco, Lucas Di Pascuale, Zoe Di Rienzo, Matías Duville, Víctor Florido, Marcelo Galindo, Sebastián Gordín, Vicente Grondona, Jorge Gumier Maier, Carlos Huffmann, Pablo Insurralde, Guillermo Iuso, Roberto Jacoby y Alejandro Ros, Daniel Joglar, Fabio Kacero, Irina Kirchuk, Fernanda Laguna, Nani Lamarque, José Luis Landet, Valentina Liernur, Lux Lindner, Lucrecia Lionti, Gustavo Marrone, Miguel Mitlag, Leticia Obeid, Marcelo Pombo, Déborah Pruden, Juan Carlos Romero, Rosa Chancho, Pablo Rosales, Daniel Santoro, Mariela Scafati, Cristina Schiavi, Rosana Schoijett, Marcela Sinclair, Juan Stoppani, Axel Straschnoy, Eduardo Stupía, Mariana Telleriia, Trulalala – Claudia del Río & Carlos Herrera, Leila Tschopp, Nahuel Vecino, Adrián Villar Rojas, Román Vitali, Ivana Vollaro, Registros Audiovisuales Archivo Gustavo Bruzzone.
Drawings from the Diamante series (2011).
Ink and pencil on paper, variable measures.
MALBA | March – July.
Curator: Lux Lindner
Work: The letter of B, 2012. Ink on paper
31: The opposite of magic
The exhibition proposes an approach to the recent production of artists whose work processes are far from the ease and promises of immediacy of magic, and are more linked to the patience and decomposition of the scientific method. The approaches are as varied as the artistic journey of each one, although a predominance of drawing has been sought.
“Unlike other artists in this exhibition, Leticia Obeid, a person to whom all expressive spontaneity is extraordinarily suspicious, is oriented towards soft, sociological science. It was not always like that. When she gathered stones offered by the Pampa Gringa, which were not Many, I wanted to be a geologist, and this perhaps led to a geology of sociology. (Geology was also the preferred science of Lévi-Strauss, another ousted by Reynoso… who is left without a tuco stain at this point?). For the purposes of our sample, the result is drawings that Obeid makes with a cold and heartless strategy: to copy the handwriting of the copy theorist, Walter Benjamin “.
“There is a word, once widely used to deal with bearded sages, that often comes to mind when it comes to Obeid, and it is acrimonious, the pursuit of extreme precision, without sparing the burden if necessary. His exposure device It makes one think more of the naturalist’s cabinet than of the supplier of eye candy to galleries. “
Héctor Meana, Aimé Pastorino, Eduardo Santiere, Julián Terán, Leticia Obeid, Nuna Mangiante, Pablo La Padula, Rodolfo Marqués, Julián D’Angiolillo .
MUAC | (University Museum of Contemporary Art) UNAM | Mexico | May – August.
Curator: Alejandra Labastida
“Dobles is an investigation that explores the political and economic history of dubbing in Mexico. Obeid problematizes the split between body and voice that characterizes this profession. The economic capital of voice actors is the ability to shed their voice, transform it and lend it to another body. But by not having a visible and recognizable body in the middle, they are easily replaceable and disposable. These interviews reveal the potentialities and risks of this condition, from its labor injustices to the ingenuity with which the actors of the Mexican golden age mocked the censorship system that prevails over the media.”
Stedelijk Museum Bureau Amsterdam | April – June
Curator: Madelon van Schie
Jonathas de Andrade, Abraham Cruzvillegas, Alfredo Márquez, Leticia El Halli Obeid, Oscar Abraham Pabón, Wilfredo Prieto, Laercio Redondo.
“In Dictados (2009) Leticia El Halli Obeid travels by train from the centre of Buenos Aires to a suburban district while copying the Carta de Jamaica by the nineteenth century liberator Simón Bolívar by hand. Among the visions Bolivar unfolds in this idealistic 1815 discourse is his prospect for a united and free America, and he calls upon Europe to sup- port Latin Americans in their struggle for independence. Particularly after leaving the centre of Buenos Aires, as El Halli Obeid goes farther into divulging the content of Carta de Jamaica while passing through different urban areas, the more a certain tart image of inequality begins to force it- self onto the viewer. One is almost automatically compelled to begin comparing Bolivar’s political and social ideals with the present state of affairs in Argentina or, mutatis mutandis, all of Latin America. Two centuries after Bolivar’s call to action, the concept of freedom still appears to be utopian.
Subsequently Dictados unerringly zeros in on the problem of translating the highest ideals, such as those expounded by Bolívar, into practice. As becomes clear in one of the quotes seen from the letter; “It is more difficult, says Montesquieu, to free a nation from slavery than to enslave a free nation.”
Madelon Van Schie, curator.
Akbank Sanat, Estambul | February – April.
Curator: Alejandra Labastida
“Deleuze states that unlike resemblance, repetition is an act that arises in relation only to that which has no equal or equivalent and therefore concerns non-exchangeable and non-replaceable singularities. It is essentially a force that opposes the singular–as a transgression or exception–to the particular capable of being subsumed by laws. This project aims to postulate that the proliferation of artistic practices generated around appropriation and citation strategies—the translation and recreation of historical pieces or events—responds to this force that affirms the political status of the singularity—of the non-replaceable being—versus the domesticated paradigm of the equivalent and interchangeable.
Most exhibitions that explore this tendency focus on the decision that the artist makes from the present in order to rescue specific events and works. This project proposes to extend the question in order to consider not only the recreative will of the artist but also this singular power that wills itself. Walter Benjamin refers to “translatability” as an inherent demand of the original and therefore as the supreme proof of the life of the works of art. The relation between a translation and the original is literally vital: the former emerges as the result of an act of survival of the latter. It is, of course, not just a simple relation of equality and similarity but rather a process of renovation and evolution that unchains the conditions of possibility for a critical reformulation..”
Alejandra Labastida, curatorial text, fragment.
Rossella Biscotti, François Bucher, Tania Bruguera, Jeremy Deller, Leticia El Halli Obeid, Jon Mikel Euba, Iain Forsyth & Jane Pollard, Mario García Torres, Sanja Iveković, Martin Jenkinson, Magdalena Leite, Jorge Méndez Blake, Fabio Morais, Vicente Razo, Danh Vo, Ming Wong, Artur Zmijewski.
ArteBA | La Rural, Buenos Aires, Argentina.
Curator: Lara Marmor
DOBLES was the winning project of the Young Curators Program organized by arteBA and sponsored by Banco Ciudad of Buenos Aires. DOBLES was presented at the 22nd edition of arteBA Fair, between May 24th and 27th, 2013, Buenos Aires, Argentina.
SOLO SHOW | Galería 713, Buenos Aires | June – August.
Curator: Lara Marmor
The theme of this group of drawings and videos revolves around the search for remembered, imagined images, recreated through memory, where some very diluted references to the 19th century landscape are mixed, with a certain style of illustration from books children, and other iconographies. The installation of these works in space was a kind of fluid collage, generating both proximity and estrangement.
54. Venice Biennale, Between always and never, Arsenale, Venice.
Curators: Alfons Hug y Paz Aburto Guevara
Conceived as a continuation of the exhibition Less time than place, this exhibition summons an artist from each country of each Hispanic-American nation, replicating in a certain way the traditional structure of national participations at the Venice Biennale. The common thread of these works is the reflection on the meaning of independence, autonomy and questions about national identities.
For this show Dictados became bilingual, as was originally Bolívar’s text, written in Spanish to be translated and published in English.
Leticia El Halli Obeid (Argentina), Narda Alvarado (Bolivia), Neville D ́Almeida (Brasil), Sebastián Preece (Chile), Juan Fernando Herrán (Colombia), Sila Chanto (Costa Rica), Reynier Leyva Novo (Cuba), María Rosa Jijón (Ecuador), Walterio Iraheta (El Salvador), Regina José Galindo (Guatemala), Adán Vallecillo (Honduras), Julieta Aranda (México), Rolando Castellón (Nicaragua), Humberto Vélez (Panamá), Claudia Casarino (Paraguay), Fernando Gutiérrez (Perú), David Pérez Karmadavis (República Dominicana), Martín Sastre (Uruguay), Alexander Apóstol (Venezuela)
Curators: Alfons Hug y Paz Aburto Guevara
Less time than place
This exhibition was commanded by the Goethe Institute to commemorate the bicentennial of the independence of Spain, which the American nations were successively celebrating as of 2009. Taking as a starting point The Letter from Jamaica, a text by Simón Bolívar, each artist made a piece by revising those words that were written in 1815 as a call to build a politically united continent and contrasting them with various local realities, stories, myths and problems.
60 Mercosur Biennial, Porto Alegre | General Curator: Gabriel Perez Barreiro | Exhibition Conversas (Conversations)
Curator: Alejandro Cesarco
All my dreams have come true, video, Annika Ström, Suecia, 2004; Enclosures, video, Nesrine Khodr, Líbano, 2004; The Settler’s Bride, painting, Lux Lindner, Argentina, 2005; A giant curve turns straight, video, Leticia El Halli Obeid, Argentina, 2006.
In this exhibition, the curator invited a group of artists who in turn had to invite two artists each, thereby generating a structure of collaborations and crossings between works, themes and places.
“Gabriel Perez Barreiro: Within a general line that ‘the personal is political’ I would like you to talk a little about the core of Leticia El Halli Obeid, where this seems to be raised more explicitly.
Alejandro Cesarco: We invited Leticia to participate with a work entitled A curve so giant that it seems straight, a video that refers to a harvesting machine factory that existed in a town in the province of Córdoba, Argentina. In the 90s and as a consequence of the imposition of neoliberal policies, this factory was sold and then ‘restructured’ by several multinational companies until they decided that it was no longer productive to keep it open. The factory in question had been founded and worked by Leticia’s family since the 1950s. Leticia invites Lux Lindner with a work that refers to the history of Argentine art and politics and Nesrine Khodr with a video that makes that idea explicit of how borders generally allow one-way traffic. We responded to this group with a video by Annike Ström that in this context works, as you said, bringing the political to a personal scale and vice versa. It is a very short video where the artist’s grandparents, who are Swedish, try to translate this phrase from Swedish into English.”
Excerpt from the catalog, p. 160.
Premio Petrobrás | ArteBa, Buenos Aires 2006.
Project selected and produced for the Petrobrás-ArteBa Prize, Buenos Aires 2006.
A curve so giant it seems straight
The work consisted of a video and a publication that reconstructed the history of the Araus combine harvester factory, which existed in the town of Noetinger, province of Córdoba since the late 1940s, and which went through all the typical economic vicissitudes in Argentine industry until its sale, in the 90’s, to a multinational company. The video mixes material filmed during a soybean harvest in the Pampas plains in 2006, with Super 8 footage from the factory’s archive.
The art fair takes place in one of the pavilions of Rural Fair of Palermo, in Buenos Aires, a fact that gave rise to the idea of working with this topic in the first place. In a way, the work investigated those connections between space, history, the economy and, in particular, the effect of globalization on our perception of scale: the big, the small, according to the point of view and the position in space.
SOLO SHOW | Cepia Visual Arts Space, UNC, Córdoba | June – July.
Curator: Carina Cagnolo
The decision of naming this exhibition as “Drawings” had to do with pointing out all those places and practices touched by drawing, even though it was other means and supports than paper and graphic tools. The set brought together works from several years and already showed a strong interest in thinking about the relationships between image and word that would be in all the following production.
Video Studios | Group exhibition at the Faculty of Architecture of the National University ofCórdoba | September 18, 19 and 20
Organized by Gustavo Crembil
Carolina Senmartin, Ciro del Barco, Daniel Riveros, Erica Naito, Laura del Barco, Leticia El Halli Obeid, Paola Sferco.
Casa 13 and Galería Cinerama | Córdoba.
Curator: Carina Cagnolo.
23 blocks was an exhibition that took place in two simultaneous places: in Casa 13 * and in a commercial premises of the Cinerama Passage, in the center of the City of Córdoba, twelve and a half blocks away between them. A set of objects made with the remains of fabric discarded by a sewing workshop, as they came off the cutting table, with minimal interventions, constituted the subject of this experiment on the characteristics of the merchandise and its relationship to the context. At one pole of the experience was the space of art, delimited as such; in the other, the open, indeterminate urban space. The Cinerama passage, named after the homonymous cinema that used to have a 3,600 screen at its Golden time, was a meeting place of social and commercial life between the 60s and 80s. With the creation of the first mall in the city began the process of decay of these typical galleries of the cordovan center that slowly turned into residual spaces in the city, image of the progress of another era.
* At Casa 13 the show was the final work of Laura del Barco and Leticia El Halli Obeid at the School of Arts of the National University of Córdoba, in July 2001.
Casa 13 | Córdoba, Argentina | October – November.
Curator: José Pizarro
Music is a series of works that attempts to explore the tension between inventory and memory. In it, the lists seem to give an objective framework to the experience of hearing, remembering and repeating the texts and sounds learned as part of a collective sentimental education. The lyrics of beloved songs are replaced by symbols, little boxes, which try to capture the unspeakable. The color red, which connotes the emotional, the loving, the blood, is used here in a mildly ironic sense to standardize an emotionality that contrasts with the coldness of the inventory. Drawings, objects, home photos that rescue some adolescent scenes, songs recorded in karaoke, make up this kind of fragmentary and nostalgic self-portrait.
The exhibition was installed at Casa 13, Córdoba, between October 29 and November 12, 1999, curated by José Pizarro.
In Bajo sus pies, the narrator returns to her hometown to mourn the death of her mother and take over the administration of the family land, both a challenge and the fulfillment of a mandate. The pampas and the agricultural industry; the fallow, the sowing and the harvest; the series and movies that she watches to evade reality, all is mixed in a story that is the story of a mother, a daughter and a family but also a novel about the current pampas and the complex and fascinating destiny of Argentina.
Bajo sus pies. – 1st ed. – Buenos Aires : Blatt & Ríos, 2020.
248 p. ; 18×13 cm.
1. Novel. 2. Contemporary Argentine Narrative. I. Title. CDD A863
© 2020, Leticia Obeid © 2020, Blatt & Ríos
Cover design: Iñaki Jankowski on photographs by Christopher Bisman
Preparação para o amor is a diary, a travel chronicle, an amour fou novel, a notebook, all at the same time. Edited as an object where two parallel stories coexist – an intimate diary on the odd pages and the footnotes on the even pages – the text covers the theme of love as an object of study that escapes its own protagonists, constructing an amorous soliloquy addressed to the absent loved one and a handful of reflections on the experience of love with its gender issues, its cultural, class, and origins barriers.
Preparação para o amor
Originally published in Spanish as Preparación para el amor.
Translation: Renato Tapado
Editorial coordination: Gabi Bresola y Regina Melim
Graphic project: Pedro Franz
Printed in Gráfica Cinelândia, Santa Catarina, Brazil, 2019.
“It must be said bluntly and at once: this new book by Leticia Obeid can be read fluently, with sustained enjoyment and without any drop in interest, practically non-stop and from end to end. But, in addition, Obeid’s writing inspires confidence, which is not a literary assessment – in which case it would be an overly subjective, impressionistic judgment – nor the willful whim of a reader with easy fascination. There is a vital honesty that is breathed in the text, from which an immediate feeling of naturalness, of domestic simplicity emanates; something that is not, eventually, only in the contents or in some conjectural spirituality of the author, but in the very matter of a writing that becomes credible and palpable almost to the touch, like a precious illuminated physical object, beyond the fictional truths or lies, confessions, true anecdotes or fantasies, which are also there. “
Preparación para el amor.
Córdoba : Caballo Negro Editora, 2015.
288 p. ; 20×14 cm.
Design: Gonzalo Peralta / Guillermo Barbero
Cover photo: Leticia Obeid
Monographic book on some visual works of Leticia Obeid and their relationship with writing. Back cover:
“Thinks then that if everything were in its place, that if the center were the center, occupied by the center, the main matter, and outside the garlands, fruits and small threads, everything in its place, then it would be easier to write. There will no longer be as many doubts as there are plains interposed between the moment and the keyboard, between the fingers and a pen, between her horizontal body and her seating body, diligent, with downcast eyes as if making a protective tent betweenher body and the world, and then everything would become unitary and ordered. The plenitude would dislodge all those remains of things, of time, of memories and minutiae, the small and infallible fissures that wrinkle the edges and little by little begin to encompass the center. “
Escribir, leer, escuchar. – 1st ed. – Buenos Aires : Blatt & Ríos, 2015.
120 p. ; 21×15 cm.
Texto principal: Federico Baeza
Interview by Alejandro Cesarco
Design: Nacho Jankowski
Translation by: Liv Schulman.
1. Argentine Contemporary Art. I. Schulman, Liv, trans. II. Qualification. CDD 708
This project had the support of the Ministry of Culture of the Nation.
“Following the autobiographical Benjamin that Sontag visits in Under the sign of Saturn, here time becomes space and Frente, perfil y llanura traces the cartography of a sensibility. In this journey to the geographical interior and to the interior of Elena, the story breaks all chronological continuity, but in these disruptions it maintains simultaneity. It is not a linear path or the mere superimposition of a character in an environment, nor is it the chronological succession of memories or the static contemplation of the past. There is a concern for accurately registering the streets, the paths, the traps, the landmarks, the sentimental constitution inscribed in the landscape. “
Frente, perfil y llanura. – 1st ed. – Córdoba : caballo negro editora, 2013.
150 p. ; 20 x 14 cm. ISBN 978-987-29176-1-6
1. Argentine Narrative. I. Title CDD A863
Cataloging date: 13/06/2013
caballo negro editora
Design: Gonzalo Peralta / Guillermo Barbero
Cover art: Belén Rivero Ríos
© 2013 caballo negro editora © 2013 Leticia Obeid
“It is known that it is the first book by Leticia Obeid. A long story that narrates Elena’s adventures: after a hangover party in Buenos Aires, she takes a bus to her hometown. The plan is to stay a few days, perhaps to recover emotionally. But a mother, a dog, relatives, friends from adolescence and the town, everything seems to conspire so that Elena does not leave. Ravaged by a drought and with the threat of a storm that does not finish unleashing, the town weaves its webs. Precious descriptions, funny scenes, prose sensitive to the rhythms of speech and the senses on a journey to the center of the soul that, in the case of exiles, it is known, remains in the middle of the birthplace”.
Blatt & Rios, 2012
1st ed. – Buenos Aires : Blatt & Ríos, 2012.
Ebook ISBN 978-987-28565-0-2
1. Argentine Narrative 2. Stories I. Title
Cover design: Leticia Obeid y Julia Masvernat
Cover image: Leticia Obeid
© 2012 Leticia Obeid
Travel chronicles anthology.
“What do we do when we travel? We always check something, ”says Proust. Is there the voice that I hear in the chronicle? I do not know, but it is the voice that proves that the lost body was there in the space-time of the trip. In the turn there are signs that resonate. Write and read in the thought forest of the world. The visitors, unconscious chroniclers, immerse themselves sensually and perceptually, inhabit the mystery of things, fearlessly going in and out in circles. “
Belén Rivero Ríos
Alejandra Baldovin, Sonia Budassi, Washington Cucurto, Cuqui, Leticia El Halli Obeid, Elvio Gandolfo, Candelaria Jaimez, Pedro Lemebel, Marcos López, Santiago Olagaray, Sol Pereyra, Damián Ríos, Hernán Tejerina, Hebe Uhart.
Caballo Negro Editora, Córdoba, 2011.
Ricardo Rojas Cultural Center.
Leticia El Halli Obeid (1st prize); Juan Maisonnave (2nd prize); Laura Gruppo (· er prize); Thomas V. Richards; Facundo Gerez; Fernando Krapp; Alfredo Staffolani; Natan Ariel Rajchenberg; Cecilia Boullosa; Marina Jurberg.
Jury: Laura Isola, Federico Jeanmaire, Mariana Enríquez
Libros del Rojas, 2010.
108 p.; 23 x 15 cm. (Narrative)
University of Buenos Aires, Secretariat of University and Student Extension
The footprint of Saturn
This video takes footage filmed in the workshops of the National Museum of Science Bernardino Rivadavia. In it we see the hands of the scientists preparing the fossil pieces found by Argentine paleontologists for their subsequent classification and sample. It was exhibited in the individual exhibition Stone, scissors, paper, Galería Hache, Buenos Aires, 2018.
The resurrection workshop
L`Officina della resurrezione is a musical work composed by Fabián Panisello in 2013 in collaboration with italian writer Erri de Lucca who reelaborated a part of the Book of Ezekiel, Old Testament, a passage in the Bible called The valley of dry bones. My contribution was the visual work that accompanied its execution live in the main auditorium of the Reina Sofía Museum, Madrid, in February 2017, within the framework of the oficial invitation that Spain made to Argentina as guest country in the ARCO Art Fair.
The video shows a series of fossils that belong to the collections of the Museum of Natural Sciences in Buenos Aires. There, paleontological pieces of plant species, vertebrates and microorganisms that existed in the earth millions of years ago are housed. Some are native specimens, others were brought from other collections, from other parts of the world. Where the carbon of the bones and plants was replaced by silicon, the stone kept the forms and modern science has been able, in the last two hundred years, to resuscitate in some way the information that these bodies carry.
Composition: Fabián Panisello
Texts: Erri de Luca y Libro de Ezequiel
Interpreters: Holger Falk (Baritone) and PluralEnsemble
Direction: Fabián Panisello
Video: Leticia Obeid
Camara: Juan Renau
Edition: Laura Preger
Duration: 23:52 minutos
Made with the support of the Ministry of Culture of the Argentine Nation within the framework of Argentina Plataforma Arco.
Curator: Sonia Becce
The video takes some scenes from the movie The Philadelphia Story, by George Cukor (1940), and overlaps the original version with the dubbed version in Spanish, achieving an effect of doubling the image andsound. Thus, the original plot based on a series of romantic doubts and disagreements, in a style of fast and sparkling dialogue, gets an extra layer of information, which can illuminate certain aspects of the meeting: the translation between languages becomes a metaphor of (in)communication in love.
Janus was, in Roman mythology, a two-faced god: one face looking to the past and the other to the future. Janus was the god of doorways, beginnings and endings. In this series, the book´s page behaves like Janus, going from past to future of a text or vice versa. Jano is the attempt to revise the minimum portion of time that can be frozen in movement, through image.
The video shows the documentation of a series of situations related to the production of a play that was performed in Germany involving a German dancer, an Argentine singer, and three Argentine musicians from a wichi community. Considering this unique event -which takes place between Berlin and Santa Victoria Este, in the province of Salta (Argentina)- as a starting point, the video develops a series of reflections and observations about the experiences and ways in which different forms of communication and cultural translation are put into play, along with its obstacles, bridges, shortcuts and challenges.
Doubles compiles a series of interviews with Mexican dubbing actors, whose voices are iconic for television and film seen on Latin America from the 60s onwards. These figures tell stories about their metier, while they also develop reflections on the role of the task, the translation, the supposed neutrality of language, the relationship between image and sound, and other ideas.
Juana and Fausta
A hand browses the argentine edition of Jane Eyre, Charlotte Brontë´s novel, published in a children´s collection called “Robin Hood”, very popular for generations of Argentineans. The gestures repeats with a book printed in Arabic, as a counterpoint between two languages, two ways of writing and reading . The illustrations also shows two types of aesthetics of female representation, intervened by a gesture that recreates the figure of the veil, trying to find out if stereotypes are in the picture or in our interpretation of it.
Filmed on a train ride from the center of Buenos Aires to the suburbs, the video documents the action of manually copying the “Letter of Jamaica” by Simon Bolivar, a document dating from 1815 and developing the Venezuelan´s political philosophy in the form a diagnosis and prognosis for Latin America. The tour shows the different urban, social and economic landscapes of the city of Buenos Aires and its suburbs, to rethink the ideas in this text and compare them to the present and to introduce the problem of translation between these ideas and practice. Being that a text in which Bolívar raises the possibility of turning the Spanish colonies into republics – a text written in the midst of the wars for Independence, a piece that is as much the result of careful observation and speculative thinking, as the movement itself, ie, is thought and action at a time – the idea for this video was to contrast the slowness of writing with the speed of travel, making manual copying text a way of foot traffic in the action, appropriating the words while the environment is changing.
B. is a travel diary, a self-portrait, and an audiovisual essay at the same time. It was filmed in the city of Paris during 2007 using Walter Benjamin´s Arcades Project as a starting point. The video develops what Benjamin called “constellations” of data, facts and thoughts, which are connected to each other, crossing time and distance, in a concept of visual history and writing as assemblies of fragments. In this way, the story is shaped as a record of an experience of knowledge in which action, thought and gaze intersect all the time to confront literature and reality, memory and present; the city today, with its postmodern problems and its modernization of the modern dream that the city of Paris represents.
Duration: 58 minutos
Idea, camara and edition: Leticia El Halli Obeid
Sound: Pablo Chimenti/Hernán Kerlleñevich.
Original medium: Single channel video (minidv pal)
Film in París, June-October of 2007.
Produced within the framework of the program of crossed artistic residencies between Buenos Aires and Paris, with the support of the Ville de Paris, the Secretariat of Culture of the Autonomous City of Buenos Aires and the Embassy of France in Argentina
A curve so giant that it seems straight
A machine harvests soybeans, stops, locks, breaks. Your operators stop to fix it.
The video mixes material filmed in 2006 during a soybean harvest in the Pampas plain, with images from the archive of a combine factory that existed in the province of Córdoba, Argentina, between the ‘50s and the ’90s. The counterpoint of materials builds a logic that recreates the body of these machines and their history, as a sign of the political and economic account of an era. In this way he investigates the boundary between documentation, art and knowledge, as well as the relationship between scale and perception.
The video collects fragments of the filming of a series of people invited to describe a work of art they remember. In these stories, the description of the different works becomes an emotional account of what they try to remember, as well as a close and domestic reflection of the place of the aesthetic experience in everyday life.
Video made at the request from the artist Mirtha Dermisache, documenting an inauguration of her homonymous exhibition at the Centro de España en Buenos Aires, in 2005. Edition revised by the artist.
Camara and edition: Leticia Obeid
Duration: 5’ 52” | Hi8, color, sound.
To write, to read, to listen
The video shows three consecutive scenes: a hand writes a word in Spanish that is deformed towards the phonetics of English; the search and reading of the word “autism” in the dictionary; the act of writing and drawing the word “Arrepio” (“goosebumps” in Portuguese) on paper, while a voice hums the same word.