Book presentation – Book presentation

Elena Tejada-Herrera, Videos from This Woman

Book presentation by Florencia Portocarrero

Elena Tejada-Herrera is a leading figure of feminist performance and video art that opened an area of inquiry and action almost unexplored throughout the history of Peruvian performance: the assertion of the artist's body in its sexual, racial and social otherness or specificity as a vehicle to critically intervene in the public space and break the silence and fear imposed by the dictatorial regime in Peru in the late 90s. In 2001, awarded with a grant from the Virginia Common Wealth University, the artist moved to the United States. The immigration process profoundly affected her practice and led her to use video-performance as a solitary form of artistic and citizen affirmation.

Videos from This Woman: Performance Documentation 1997-2010 is the first critical and long-overdue revision of the work of Elena Tejada-Herrera and results from the exhibition of the same name that took place at Proyecto AMIL (Lima, Peru, 2016). Edited by Florencia Portocarrero, the publication compiles the work of Tejada-Herrera through an extensive portfolio specially created by the artist and includes unpublished essays by: Portocarrero; the artist Armando Andrade Tudela; and the curator Miguel A. López. The book also presents a dossier of texts by the artist (originally circulated as an independent edition in 1999) and a conversation between Tejada-Herrera; the visual anthropologist Karen Bernedo; the artist Claudia Coca; and the performer, teacher and cultural promoter, Lorena Peña. The design of Videos from This Woman: Performance Documentation 1997-2010 is the outcome of a collaboration between vm& estudio grafico and the artist.

Florencia Portocarrero is a researcher, writer, and curator based in Lima. She received her BA in clinical psychology at the Catholic University of Peru, where she also earned an MA in psychoanalytical theory. From 2012–13 she participated in the De Appel Curatorial Program in Amsterdam and in 2015 completed an MA in contemporary art theory at Goldsmiths, University of London. Portocarrero’s writings on art and culture regularly appear in contemporary art magazines such as Atlántica Journal, Artishock, and Terremoto. During 2017/2018 Portocarrero was a grant holder of KfW Stiftung's program 'Curators in Residence: Curating Connections' in collaboration with the DAAD Artists-in-Berlin Program. In Lima she works as a public program curator at Proyecto AMIL, and is a co-founder of Bisagra, one of the few independent art spaces in the city. She recently edited Videos From This Woman: Performance Documentation 1997–2010, a monograph on the work of the artist Elena Tejada-Herrera.