Americas

Matthew Buckingham
The six grandfathers, Paha Sapa, in the year 502 002

Matthew Buckingham presents a narrative directly connected with a highly symbolic site in the United States, the Mount Rushmore Memorial*. He elaborates a historiographic narrative of this place and switches it into the domain of science fiction by proposing a photograph of the Memorial as it should appear in 500 000 years. The effigies of Washington, Jefferson, Lincoln and Roosevelt become unrecognizable. In the texts, deployed in a chronological order, we learn, among other things, that the sculptor Gutzon Borglum was a member of the Ku Klux Klan.Buckingham tells real and fictional stories to test their validity and exemplarity in the present. The installation, featuring the image of the Memorial, can lead us to reflect on our role in writing new chapters of this history.

 

* The Memorial is located in South Dakota in the United States, it is an 18 meters high monumental granite sculpture initiated in 1925, representing four of the most significant presidents in American history.

 

Matthew Buckingham was born in 1963 in the United States of America. He has recently had solo exhibitions at the Art Institute of Chicago and at the Reina Sofia in Madrid. His critical approach reenacts real or fictional stories while interrogating their validity in order to clarify the present. He considers the construction of collective memory and individual memory. He asks how these memories can be diametrically opposed to the writing of History with a capital H dependent on the Modernist ideology of progress. Several of his works are linked to the exploration of the lives of significant individuals, such as important figureheads for Feminism. His work relates to the questions posed as a consequence of Cultural Studies in the 1970s, of Queer and Feminist theories as well as Postcolonial studies. In his articulation of reality and fiction, he is close to works which are already in the collection by Mario Garcia Torres or by Walid Raad.