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© Adam Kufeld

Watching the Unwatchable: Films Confront Torture

Sunday, February 7, 2010
5:30 p.m. Archeology of Memory: Villa Grimaldi
Quique Cruz, Marilyn Mulford (U.S./Chile, 2008)

Cosponsored by the Center for Latin American Studies
Musical Performance by Quijeremá


Featuring Quique Cruz on strings, winds, and percussion, Quijeremá is a performing arts quintet that celebrates and expands the cultures of the Americas through original music, poetry, and multimedia art installations.

One of the most notorious sites in modern Chile, Villa Grimaldi is a former estate that became an interrogation center during the dictatorial Pinochet regime; over five thousand individuals were tortured there, and over three hundred “disappeared.” On the day after his nineteenth birthday, the young Chilean artist Quique Cruz was clandestinely arrested and sent to Villa Grimaldi; he was fortunate, however, in that after months in the so-called “Palace of Laughter” (as its officials baptized it), he was released. A book project, music piece, and film, Archeology of Memory gathers the recollections of those who survived Villa Grimaldi, blending each recovered fragment of experience into a new archeology, one built to convert darkness into light, and pain into beauty. Touching on ideas of exile, memory, and survival, Archeology of Memory is both a historical document of a Latin American tragedy, and a witnessing of how art and music can act as forms of remembrance and healing.

Archeology of Memory was nominated for the 2009 IDA Music Documentary Award.

—Jason Sanders

• Photographed by Vicente Franco. (88 mins, In English and Spanish with English subtitles, Color, DigiBeta, From Interfaze)