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Antropofagia cultural: vanguardias modernistas - Dédalo

Written by Arion on Friday, September 07 2012 and posted in Blog

Bennys Gym (2007)
Directed by Lisa Marie Gamlem

Perhaps aggression is inherent to every human being, it’s an intrinsic desire of hurting others by no other reason than the opportunity to do so. Alfred is a teenager ostracized by other kids, he gets bullied all the time by Benny and his friends, who beat him up and pee on his notebook. Why is it that these youngsters experience such joy by torturing a defenseless boy?

The boys attend the same high school but no education system can prevent what goes on here. Why? Because there is an education that pertains to the norm, to the word (id est, the reality); but there is always something else, something deep that cannot be channeled through the word (id est, the real). It’s often thought that the first one is more than enough for the educative system and that’s a blatant mistake. The teacher and the board cannot connect with the student. Reason –rationality- is not enough to deal with the pre-rational magma that governs our impulses and prevents us from becoming what we want to be, even if we don’t know what that is.

When Benny is alone and spends time with Alfred, he is a different lad. The high school bully shares his secrets, his fears and hopes with the unpopular kid. It’s no surprise that certain familial dynamics can create a vicious circle (of poverty, of violence, etc.), Benny’s violent father physically punishes his son, not unlike the way Benny does it with other kids in school. An outlandish bond takes place between them. Perhaps, together, isolated from the world and society, from reality, they gain access to the real, that place in which desire is born.

Antropofagia cultural: vanguardias modernistas - Dédalo
Michele del Campo

In high school, Benny keeps ignoring Alfred, but when they’re together everything is different. One night, Benny suggests that he could have sexual intercourse with Alfred, and kisses him passionately. Alfred acts surprised but had been longing for such a moment since day one. Nevertheless desire cannot guarantee a safe-conduct through adolescence… and soon, Benny’s abusive friends savagely take it out on Alfred, they even try to drown him in the lake. Benny is a witness to all that, but he finds himself exscinded. Should he attempt to rescue his friend he would expose himself before the eyes of the others. But then, the possibility of losing Alfred forever is more than he can bear.  

This Norwegian short film about abuse and marginality demonstrates that youth’s problems are the same everywhere in the globe, and that as a society we’re failing to keep things balanced. Our focus, as usual, goes to reality and not to the Lacanian real.

Antropofagia cultural: vanguardias modernistas - Dédalo
The Gathering vol. 14

Ayer en la noche se llevó a cabo la premiación del 6° concurso de diseño organizado por la embajada de Brasil. Como en años anteriores, la celebración se realizó en Dédalo, y en esta ocasión tanto María Elena Fernández como Eduardo Lores, se encargaron de acompañar al embajador de Brasil en la inauguración del evento. Como siempre, fue un gusto escuchar a Eduardo presentando “Antropofagia cultural: vanguardias modernistas”, en parte porque me hizo recordar la época en la que era mi profesor del curso de Estética en la facultad de comunicaciones de la PUCP, y en parte porque Eduardo con la generosidad que lo caracteriza, no se amilanó a la hora de comentar en qué consiste el diseño y cuál es su relación con el arte desde la perspectiva de dos países hermanos como Brasil y Perú. Por supuesto, siempre irreverente, también compartió algunas bromas al referirse a su trabajo como consultor de arte para Dédalo cama adentro. 

Antropofagia cultural: vanguardias modernistas - Dédalo
my page (final version) / mi página (versión final)

Me encontré con Hugo Alegre, Carmen Alegre y Julio Garay, y mientras tomaba un par de caipirinhas le pregunté a María Elena si ya había leído mi entrevista en la revista Dosis (la vi hace un par de días y le entregué un ejemplar), y también le pedí que le alcanzara la revista a Eduardo. Mientras pasaban los mozos con bandejas llenas de apetitosos bocaditos, me preguntaba si mi amigo Max ya estaría a punto de llegar. Y llegó, efectivamente, a buena hora. Hace varios años que asisto a la premiación de este concurso de diseño, pero esta es la vez en que más me he divertido. Entre los comentarios de Max sobre el reciente libro de Vargas Llosa, “La civilización del espectáculo” y mis opiniones sobre los objetos de diseño que poblaban la sala de exhibiciones, me olvidé por completo de algunas experiencias poco agradables que he tenido en Plus TV.

Luego que terminara el evento, Max y yo nos fuimos caminando hasta el histórico puente de los suspiros, patrimonio cultural que ha sido víctima del desatino de algún alcalde que, seguramente entusiasmado por algún ofertón de Luz del Sur, ha cubierto todos los bordes inferiores del puente con unas luces de dudoso valor estético. Decidimos comer algo aunque yo la verdad ya estaba bastante satisfecho después de tantos bocaditos en Dédalo, pero aprovechamos para quedarnos conversando hasta la medianoche, más o menos. 

A continuación incluyo un dibujo a lápiz del extraordinario artista italiano Michele del Campo, a quien conocí cuando visitó Lima a fines del año pasado. Y también la página que dibujé para un futuro número de The Gathering. Y hablando de The Gathering dentro de poco escribiré una reseña sobre el número de agosto, en el que participo con una historia de 4 páginas. Por lo pronto ahí están los ejemplares sobre mi mesa, esperándome.

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About the Author - Arion

Arion, who is either from Chile or New York (it’s not really clear) writes a blog that the Outhouse steals on a regular basis.  Arion is by far the nicest of all the staff writers and the most well behaved only having been banned from one country.  One thing we really appreciate about Aroin is that he writes his reviews in English and Spanish and we hope someday he’ll translate this blurb for us.  We’re not so good at languages, just look at how well we write in English if you need proof.  You should bookmark Arion’s blog - – and actually look at it.  There will be a quiz at the end of every month.


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