Vera Historia –a preface
Give me a place to stand, a lever long enough and I will move the world.
Archimedes 230 B
As the father of modern Calculus, Archimedes has resurfaced into contemporary consciousness with the rediscovery of one of his lost treatises —The Method. In The Method, scholars are given a privileged view into the mind of the genius that not only provided us with the Eureka Phenomenon but also with firm concepts of Infinity. Finding the birth of Calculus 1800 years before it was invented, has been described as a theoretical investigation that would have certainly changed the history and gravity of our world.
With the preoccupation with rewriting Western history in an air of inclusion and social responsibility, The Method is a model for what information can do to the couse of our daily life. Histories exist by remaining in the cultural consciousness. As new narratives arise, placing people, objects, and sites into new relations, a dislocation is created rewriting and reevaluating the contemporary and the future. This is not just about media but the un-translated, un-embellished, everyday world, the real moments of dislocations as one flips through a channel or stands in line at the grocery. Very Historia, as an overarching conceptual idea and as a guiding principle in my artistic practice, inserts false histories about Puerto Rico into the World’s meta-narrative. The products become a fiction that potentially forecasts the emergence of a new cultural, global politic that ends Puerto Rican exceptionalism.
As an example of this principal, Encantada documents the construction of the world’s tallest hotel in Puerto rico, Hotel El Encanto. Posing as architect, realtor, maid, hostess and even synchronized swimmer, I present the finer points of the colossus, which rises as political grounds shift underneath. Reflecting current Puerto Rican tourism economy Encantada examines what happens when personal identity and society’s collective aspirations depend upon the transformation of the landscape.
*Vera Historia: transl. as True History. The first known science fiction novel concerned with a voyage into space and to the moon was written two thousand years ago by the Greek Sophist and Satirist Lucian of Samosata. In this journey, the ship and its crew end up on the moon, colonizes its inhabitants, and returns them back to Earth for display.